'Doctor Who' More Popular Than 'Battlestar Galactica'?
Is 'Doctor Who' more popular than 'Battlestar Galactica'? A post on the Big Dumb Object (which includes the 'Doctor Who' spinoff Torchwood in the comparison), would lead you to believe that the good Doctor much more popular.
Ahh, but as we all know, there are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics. And this clearly falls into that God-forsaken world of statistics. The article cites a Google Trends graph, which plots the volume of traffic on the engine for each of the following search terms: 'Battlestar Galactica', 'Doctor Who' and 'Torchwood'. From the graph, 'Doctor Who' has held a significant advantage over the past year.
But, as a good researcher, I added a few other search terms to the mix - 'Firefly', 'Buffy' and 'Heroes' (and deleted 'Torchwood', because it really was just a blip on the graph). Interestingly enough, 'Buffy' has held steady in search popularity. In fact, except for a spike just after the debut of 'Doctor Who' season two, 'Buffy' has matched or exceeded the search volume of the show. Not bad for a show that has been cancelled for several years!
The real strange looking graph line is for 'Heroes'. At first glance, it seems to destroy the competition, almost doubling the volume for any of the other shows. However, upon closer inspection, 'Heroes' also bested the competition in 2005 - before the show was even on the air! This is the true fallacy of this type of comparison. Heroes is a generic term. Obviously, people were (and likely still are) searching for that term with no thought of the television show. It is clear that Google Trends, although a neat tool, has to be used with care when attempting comparisons.
So, lets get back to the original question: Is 'Doctor Who' currently more popular than 'Battlestar Galactica'?
So, 'Battlestar' is more popular, no matter what Google says. But, hey, I watch both - no reason to deprive myself based on something silly like popularity!