The Masked Singer, ITV’s new singing contest with a twist, launched strong last night with an average of 5.5 million viewers.
The show sees a line-up of disguised celebrities perform a song on-stage, with the panel – Jonathan Ross, Rita Ora, Davina McCall and Ken Jeong – and viewers at home left to guess who’s behind the mask.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, episode one peaked at 6.5 million viewers for the celebrity reveal, with ‘Butterfly’ unmasked as ex-EastEnders star and DJ Patsy Palmer.
These figures mean The Masked Singer is ITV’s best new entertainment show launch since celebrity diving competition Splash in 2013.
The show soundly defeated BBC One’s competition, The Greatest Dancer, with that show’s series two launch pulling in 3.2 million.
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Speaking after she was unmasked, Patsy Palmer said: “I love singing in general – not that I’m any good, but it’s an extremely uplifting thing to do. I love music, it’s a total passion of mine – I DJ – so I’m constantly playing music. To be able to get on a stage that size was a dream too although I must say I was really nervous.”
The Masked Singer continues tonight at 8pm on ITV, with another six undercover celebrities taking to the stage to perform.