Still Game returns to BBC with record audience

Scottish comedy Still Game made a truimphant return to TV screens last night, setting a new record in the process.

Still Game attracted record audiences for the first episode of the new series. Picture: PA

The sitcom enjoyed its highest ever overnight audience figures on Friday, returning after an absence of nearly a decade.

The first episode of the new series took a 58 per cent share of the Scottish TV audience with 1.3 million viewers, beating its previous record of 1.2 million.

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Airing for the first time UK-wide on BBC One, it drew a total of audience of 3.2 million.

The new six-part series was commissioned after the show’s writers and stars, Greg Hemphill and Ford Kiernan, renewed their partnership for a live show at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow in 2014.

The comedy had a 21-night sold-out run with a new live stage show planned for February 2017.

Friday’s episode ranked second only to Andy Murray’s Wimbledon victory in July in terms of overnight audience in Scotland this year.

Ewan Angus, commissioning editor for BBC Scotland and executive producer of Still Game, said: “The return of Still Game has been hugely anticipated since it was announced earlier this year.

“It’s without doubt a jewel in BBC Scotland’s crown and we are delighted that it continues to sparkle for audiences.

“This is the first time Still Game has aired on BBC One throughout the UK and its heart-warming to see UK audiences getting to know Jack, Victor and the Craiglang gang in such numbers and we hope they continue to enjoy their stories over the next five weeks.

“These figures are testament to the hard work Ford, Greg and the whole team have invested in this new series and we are thrilled for it to be rewarded in this way.”