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Strong start for BBC Three 'Spooks' spinoff

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Strong start for BBC Three 'Spooks' spinoff
BBC Three's youth-skewing Spooks spinoff made a strong start in the ratings last night (Sunday).

The first episode of Spooks: Code 9, which received a generally bad reception from critics, averaged 810,000 (3.8%) for the channel between 9pm and 9.50pm and peaked with 930,000. The ensuing second episode had 703,000 (4%). The figures made the programme the most-watched multichannel show of the day by a long margin and capped a strong night for BBC Three overall.

Angelina Jolie action movie Lara Croft: Tomb Raider pulled in an impressive 648,000 (3.3%) over 90 minutes from 7.30pm then, after Spooks, a double bill of Family Guy entertained 480,000 (3.8%) and 548,000 (5.6%).

Sky One's Gladiators pulled in another strong audience, averaging 670,000 (3.8%) in the 7pm hour, building on its 498,000 (3.1%) lead-in from The Simpsons. ITV2 was solid throughout primetime too, starting with 347,000 (2%) for America's Got Talent at 6.40pm then climbing to 424,000 (2.1%) for a repeat of Xtra Factor: One Year On in the 8pm hour. Sunday night movie The Sixth Sense, with Bruce Willis and Haley Joel Osment, interested 412,000 (2.3%) between 9pm and 11.10pm.

Elsewhere, More4's Sunday afternoon marathon of Come Dine With Me peaked with 477,000 (3.1%) for the 6.15pm episode and on Film4, Adam Sandler comedy movie Little Nicky averaged 365,000 (1.9%) from 9pm.

Among the terrestrials, BBC One's new series Britain From Above made an impressive debut with 5.16m (21.2%) in the 9pm hour. The show - fronted by Andrew Marr - documents a day at various locations around Britain, as seen from above. Earlier, the Last Choir Standing results show averaged 4m (24.6%) over 30 minutes from 6pm, and in the 8pm hour, documentary Jimmy and the Wild Honey Hunters averaged 3.7m (16.2%).

ITV1 led primetime with its Sunday night drama lineup, starting with 6.02m (29.9%) for Heartbeat in the 7pm hour. A repeat of Midsomer Murders averaged a hefty 6.13m (26.1%) between 8pm and 10pm, up more than 600,000 on Agatha Christie's Marple in the same slot last week.

BBC Two had 2.23m (9.8%) for a Top Gear repeat at 8pm, then the audience dropped off to 1.54m (6.3%) for Ewan McGregor documentary Long Way Round. A Britain From Above spinoff show, looking at the transformation of London over the years, improved to 2.05m (10.4%) from 10pm.

On Channel 4, a Celebrity Wife Swap featuring Jilly Goolden and Alexander O'Neal took 2.06m (9%) in the 8pm hour, a significant rise from the 922,000 (4.1%) who watched I Am The Elephant Man in the same slot last week. The latest Big Brother had 2.87m (11.8%) at 9pm, with an additional 307,000 on Channel 4+1, then one-off documentary Kill It, Skin It, Wear It appealed to 1m (5.9%) at 10pm.

Five averaged 1.03m (4.5%) throughout much of primetime with the Meg Ryan movie You've Got Mail. The Demi Moore thriller The Juror was less popular, however, with 478,000 (4.5%) from 10.20pm.

Olympics coverage continued to rate well, beginning with the five hour Olympic Breakfast on BBC One with 1.92m (41.1%) at 6am. Coverage then switched to BBC Two, averaging 2.87m (26.6%) until 5.30pm. The nightly highlights show brought in 3.65m (18.1%) to BBC One at 7pm.

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