Belfast Telegraph

X Factor’s Sunday night slot a winner in the ratings

ITV’s flagship singing show is back, but how did it fare in the ratings over its first weekend?

The X Factor followed up a 13-year ratings low on Saturday night with a slight rise in its audience on Sunday.

The ITV talent contest attracted 6.5 million viewers for its first Sunday show of the new series, a small increase on the equivalent figure for last year (6.3 million) and the same figure as 2015.

In contrast, the first Sunday night show in 2014 had overnight ratings of 8.2 million, and in 2013 the number was 9.9 million.

This year is the fifth time The X Factor has launched with a pair of shows on the same weekend.

Typically the Sunday edition has had lower overnight ratings than the Saturday show – but this year the audience for Sunday (6.5 million) was higher than that for Saturday (6 million).

Saturday’s ratings were the lowest for an X Factor launch since the show’s very first year on screen in 2004.

This year’s figures are likely to rise when the official ratings are published next week, which will include viewers who recorded the shows and watched up to seven days afterwards on catch-up.

Elsewhere, the Sunday night ratings battle in the 9pm slot was won by the final episode of BBC One’s Strike (The Cuckoo’s Calling), the series based on the books written by JK Rowling’s alter ego Robert Galbraith.

The last instalment in the three-part series, which starred Tom Burke and Holliday Grainger, bowed out with 5.3 million viewers.

The finale was up against the second episode of the returning series of ITV’s lavish period drama Victoria, which was watched by 4.3 million people.

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BBC Handout from Strike (C) Bronte Film and TV Ltd/Steffan Hill

This figure is an increase on last week’s opening episode of the Jenna Coleman-fronted drama, which drew an average of 3.9 million viewers.

Another Sunday night success story was ITV’s hour-long instalment of Coronation Street, which attracted an average audience of 5.1 million.

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Soap fans were on the edge of their seats as they watched tense scenes between Pat Phelan (played by Connor McIntyre) and his prisoner Andy Carver (played by Oliver Farnworth).

All ratings figures for ITV include people watching on ITV +1.

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