Peter Capaldi’s Doctor Who is officially the darkest of the modern era

If you’ve ever thought that Doctor Who seemed like it was getting darker or more grown-up in recent years, then you may have a point – because according to official data researched by, more episodes during Peter Capaldi’s run as the Doctor have been rated unsuitable for very young viewers than any of his recent predecessors.

The majority of Doctor Who episodes in the modern series have been rated PG (Parental Guidance) by the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), meaning that they should be fine for most kids but parents should consider whether it’s suitable if the child is under 8 or more sensitive.

However, a few Doctor Who episodes have been rated 12, meaning that children below that age are not always recommended to view them – and are banned from seeing them in cinemas or from buying or renting them. And Peter Capaldi’s time on the series has featured more episodes with that rating than any other Doctor Who since the show returned in 2005. Such episodes may have included mild threat or horror, violence or imitable behaviour (i.e. a character doing something dangerous that kids might copy), and you can find out more about what constitutes a 12 rating here.

Christopher Eccleston’s year as the Doctor included two 12-rated episodes (The Unquiet Dead and Dalek) while David Tennant’s longer stint in the Tardis saw four (Tooth and Claw, Planet of the Ood, The Doctor’s Daughter and The Waters of Mars) and Matt Smith’s Doctor only racked up two (The God Complex and The Angels Take Manhattan).

By contrast, Peter Capaldi’s tenure as the Doctor has seen, er, 12 12-rated episodes, a third more than the total that the series had been given in the nine years before that, with 2015’s series nine alone given seven 12 ratings, nearly doubling the number of higher-rated episodes that the series had received in the 10 years before. Now THAT’S a darker series.

In case you’re wondering, Peter Capaldi’s 12-rated episodes are as follows: Dark Water, Last Christmas, The Magician’s Apprentice, The Witch’s Familiar, Under the Lake, Before the Flood, The Zygon Inversion, Heaven Sent, The Return of Doctor Mysterio, Knock Knock, Oxygen, Extremis.

 Read the full story at the Radio Times site