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Over five million viewers tuned in for the return of Jimmy McGovern’s BBC One drama Accused.

The second series opened with a play starring Sean Bean as a transvestite and pulled in an impressive 5.3 million viewers. The first series of Accused aired on BBC One in 2010 and attracted some controversy and by the end of its run had ratings of just 3.2 million viewers. The BBC, given the controversy surrounding one play in the series and the decline in ratings, made the unexpected decision to renew the series.  Upcoming plays in the Accused series will feature Olivia Coleman, Anne Marie Duff, Sheridan Smith, John Bishop and Anna Maxwell Martin.

Elsewhere last night ITV‘s repeat of detective drama Lewis had just 2.9 million viewers; the broadcaster recently confirmed the Inspector Morse spin-off will end after the seventh series. Comedy wise Jack Whitehall’s new BBC Three series Bad Education launched with 830,000 viewers making it the highest comedy debut on the broadcaster. On Sky Living the new comedy series Gates, starring Joanna Page and Tom Ellis, drew just under 300,000 viewers.

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