Catherine Tate as Donna Noble, David Tennant as The Doctor. (BBC Photo)

BBC America has bought the eight-part drama about the murder of a young boy in a small coastal town and what happens to that community when it becomes the spotlight of a major murder investigation and the inevitable media frenzy.

David Tennant — aka Dr. Who — stars in “Broadchurch,” which will run on BBCA after its UK run on ITV in the spring.

Not coincidentally, Dr Who is in no small way responsible for BBCA enjoying its best ratings ever, BBCA chief Perry Simon told TV critics attending Summer TV Press Tour 2013 in Pasadena.

Tennant plays newcomer Detective Inspector Alec Hardy – a by-the-book guy — who leads the investigation with local Detective Sergeant Ellie Miller, played by Olivia Colman.