Two-part thriller A Mother's Son, also starring Hermoine Norris, premiered with 4.54m (18.2%) in the 9pm hour and added an impressive 462k (2.7%) on ITV1 +1.
Meanwhile, Channel 4's Paralympics coverage scored 2.29m (9.6%) between 7.30pm and 10pm.
BBC One's New Tricks, which last week launched with an audience of 7.8m, dipped over 800k to average 6.94m (27.8%) in its usual 9pm slot. However, the veteran crime drama remained the day's most-watched programme excluding soaps.
Late-night family sitcom Citizen Khan drew 2.78m (19.3%) for its second episode at 10.35pm
Paul O'Grady's new documentary, For The Love of Dogs, begun with a decent 4.03m (17.2%) on ITV1 at 8pm (+1: 240k/0.9%), while Panorama interested 2.76m (11.4%) at 8.30pm.
Over on BBC Two, University Challenge logged 2.45m (10.4%) at 8pm, Lorraine's Fast, Fresh and Easy Food served up 1.67m (7.1%) at 8.30pm, and only 820k (3.3%) watched Horizon from 9pm.
Celebrity Big Brother anchored Channel 5's schedule with 1.79m (9.1%) in the 9pm hour, appealing to a further 192k (1.1%) on +1. Celebrity Wedding Planner followed with 762k (4.4%), then 551k (6%) watched Emma Willis's Bit on the Side.
Overall, BBC One and ITV1 tied in pole position of primetime with 22% each - ITV1 +1 had 1.1%. Channel 4 claimed third place with 8.5% (+1: 0.4%), comfortably ahead of BBC Two's 5.7%, and Channel 5's 4.4% (+1: 0.3%).
Popular quiz show Only Connect retained its multichannel top spot with 819k (3.4%) for BBC Four at 8.30pm.
BARB ratings data supplied by Attentional