10 mil tune in for BBC1's 'Doctor Who' finale

David Tennant's future on the show is resolved

LONDON -- Nearly 10 million viewers tuned in Saturday night to watch the season finale of BBC1's sci-fi smash "Doctor Who," after the penultimate episode showed the Doctor, played by David Tennant, beginning to regenerate -- a process that would mean he would be replaced by new actor.

Although the eponymous Time Lord quickly recovered at the beginning of the finale, BBC scriptwriters kept viewers in suspense as to Tennant's long-term future in the cult role. Speculation about Tennant's future have been rife since the actor's decision to take up a season with the Royal Shakespeare Company means there will not be a new season of "Doctor Who" until 2010, though he will appear in a number of specials.