The first episode of Line Of Duty’s fifth series has become the most-watched programme on British television this year.
The BBC One police procedural’s 2019 debut secured an audience of 13.2 million, according to 28-day four-screen data from the BBC.
The untitled episode reintroduced Superintendent Ted Hastings, DS Steve Arnott and DI Kate Fleming, and involved an organised crime group hijacking a police convoy transporting seized drugs.
Episode 5, which aired on Sunday night, received the highest overnight figure for Line Of Duty ever, with an average of 7.9 million viewers.
Sunday’s special 90-minute finale is expected to top that figure.
Showrunner Jed Mercurio said: “We’re thrilled and flattered by the amazing response to this series of Line Of Duty.
“On behalf of the whole production, I want to thank our viewers for their fantastic loyalty, and World Productions and the BBC for their unstinting support.”
Simon Heath, executive producer for World Productions which makes the series, said: “It’s testament to Jed’s brilliant writing and the best cast on British TV that the audience for Line Of Duty has grown bigger with every series.
“A huge thanks to the BBC who took a chance on a small show in Birmingham back in 2011, and to everyone who’s supported us since.”