Weekend ratings round-up: ‘Parade’s End’ concludes with 1.8m

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Although critically acclaimed, the lavish period drama, based on Ford Madox Ford’s novels, sadly never managed to set the ratings alight; a fact never more apparent than when compared to ITV1’s period drama behemoth Downton Abbey.

Last night saw the second episode of Series 3 reach an astonishing 8.4m (31.8%) viewers. This figure is less than last week’s debut figure, which is to be expected, but perhaps more interestingly this is over 1m viewers lower than the second instalment of Downton‘s second series last year. This is a trend in viewing figures that has seemingly affected a number of returning dramas this year as well as being The X Factor’s current pariah.

Doctor Who slipped in the ratings slightly compared to last week’s episode and drew in 5.5m (25.6%) viewers for The Power of Three on Saturday. But, the Time Lord is going from strength to strength when the appropriately named timeshift figures are taken into account, with consolidated figures for A Town Called Mercy confirming that 8.4m people saw the Doctor return to the wild west for the first time since William Hartnell’s tenure.

Saturday night also saw The Thick of It attract 1m viewers and a 5% share of the audience for the political misadventures of Peter Mannion MP on BBC Two, while Channel 5 stalwart CSI managed 1.1m (5.8%) for the continuing investigations of its Miami division.

> Buy Series 1 & 2 of Downton Abbey on Amazon.

Watch the trailer for Doctor Who‘s The Power of Three

All data was supplied by Attentional, Digital Spy and The Guardian.

What did you enjoy on TV at the weekend? Let us know below…

> Read more from Chris in his blog, Boyle’s Law.