What do you get if you cross a Coronation Street legend with a man who calls his abdominal muscles ‘The Situation’? 2.7 million viewers and a 12.9 per cent audience share if you’re Richard Desmond, it seems.
It may not be the dizzy heights of the 5.1 million (21.9% share) who tuned in to watch the premiere of Channel 5’s first crack at the show in 2011, and is slightly down on January’s 3.5 million (15.9% share) launch show – but it’s still respectable numbers.
Obviously the lure of seeing Julie Goodyear sharing a house with Page Three girl Rhian Sugden, Julian Clary, Samantha Brick and Heather Trott off EastEnders is still just too much for some people to resist.
Big Brother first hit our screens on Channel 4 in 2000, and stayed with the broadcaster for eleven series. After a year’s hiatus, Channel 5 picked up the rights to the Endemol format and have since screened two series of the ‘public’ show and three runs of the ‘celebrity’ programme.
Although average viewing figures have been unable to match those of the programme in its Channel 4 heyday – the consistency of the numbers, and the regularity with which C5 bring the show back – suggests it has turned out to be a good buy for the network.
Celebrity Big Brother continues on Channel 5 tonight at 10pm