TV Overnights: Soaps provide BBC One & ITV1 with Tuesday's biggest audiences

11 Jul 2012  |  Niall Johnson 

Tuesday saw ITV1's biggest hit arrive early in the evening with Emmerdale (7pm) bringing in the channel's largest audience. Yesterday saw Zak Dingle finally get the thumbs up from the head doctors as he was allowed to go home. The patriarch of House Dingle didn't see his troubles end there and was almost immediately set upon by those dastardly loan sharks.

6 million viewers watched as a mentally delicate Zak was told he owed more money even though the balance had been paid off. And loan sharks used to be so amiable. The soap, set in the peaceful Yorkshire Dales, attracted a 30% audience share.

Later on BBC One EastEnders (7:30pm) continued to recover from the ratings thrashing it received as a result of Wimbledon 2012. Pint-sized mentalist Ben Mitchell's days may be numbered. Covering up a murder must be hard work for two teenage mates, so last night Jay and Ben decided to let off some steam through a day of racing. This being EastEnders, it wasn't long before a bit of fun resulted in bad times.

Being fairly sloppy at evil deeds is a bit of a fatal flaw, so it was lucky it was cousin Jay who stumbled upon Ben's secret last night. Not only has Ben been writing birthday cards to deceased Heather, he has been keeping a little momento of their encounter all this time.

This probably isn't the wisest idea as the picture frame Ben used to kill Heather is covered with her brain matter and DNA (and has most likely fused with whatever other life forms live under his bed). The plotline has been running for a while, with many viewers excited to see the troubled slayer get his comeuppance good and proper. The latest development netted 7 million viewers and a 35% audience share, securing the biggest audience of the night for BBC One.

Later on BBC Two was another version of fictional London that hit a bit closer to home. Back after a three month break, the second series of Twenty Twelve (10pm) was spread out to become timelier as the days go by. Last night was the penultimate episode and with 32 days to go on the (backwards) clock Ian Fletcher held the final meeting of the Twenty Twelve Security Committee's Special Catastrophisation Unit. The arrival of the American Security Team further complicated issues and the episode pulled in 1 million viewers (a 5% share).

Earlier on the same channel was police corruption drama Line of Duty, which crossed the series' half way point last night. Very bad cop Lennie James began to buckle under the pressure and guilt after last weeks mayhem. The first episode attracted over two million viewers, with last week's and last night's instalment netting 2.9 million (a 12% share) - BBC Two's biggest audience of the day.

Aaron Sorkin was back to set the American media's agenda straight again with The Newsroom on Sky Atlantic at 10pm. After already exploring the shady world of prime time television in the cancelled Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip and picking up an Oscar for The Social Network, the states' most revered scribe was back in territory slightly reminiscent of The West Wing.

The Newsroom existed in the type of universe where heartfelt speeches were common place and featured Jeff Daniels as a disgruntled anchor and Jane Fonda as the media group's CEO. The drama pulled in an audience of 100,000, making it Sky Atlantic's most popular show of the day.

Overnight data is available each morning in's TV Database, with all BARB registered subscribers able to view reports for terrestrial networks and key multi-channel stations.

Leave a comment

Thank you for your comment - a copy has now been sent to the Newsline team who will review it shortly. Please note that the editor may edit your comment before publication.

Newsline Bulletins

Receive weekly round-ups of the latest comment, opinion and media news, direct to your inbox.

Enter your full name Enter your company name Enter your job title Enter a valid email address Enter your telephone number

Select one or more bulletins
More Information

Thank you for signing up

Leading Columnists TV OVERNIGHTS Featured Videos Latest Data Analysis