The series two debut of Poldark failed to dethrone rival period drama Victoria in the ratings as the two shows went head to head.
Consolidated seven-day figures, released by the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board (Barb) a week after the BBC programme aired, show that the Aidan Turner-fronted show was viewed by 6.65 million people overall.
ITV’s third episode of Victoria, starring former Doctor Who actress Jenna Coleman, beat its main competition with consolidated figures showing a total audience of 7.75 million.
The two lavish series faced off against each other in the 9pm slot, with initial overnight figures showing an early lead on Victoria’s part.
Victoria scored an average of 5.2 million viewers and a peak of 5.9 million, with those numbers including people watching on ITV+1.
Poldark kicked off its second series on Sunday September 4 with an average of 5.1 million and an audience peak of 5.3 million, without the inclusion of catch-up figures.
The data released by Barb highlights the fact both the shows continued to gain viewers over the past seven days, with Victoria picking up more momentum on catch-up services to take the crown in the TV battle.
Meanwhile, overnight figures show that the second episode of Poldark was viewed by an average of 4.8 million with a peak of 5.1 million, garnering an audience share of 22.3%.
Sunday night’s Victoria won the ratings race again as it edged its competition, with the initial numbers showing it had an average of five million and a peak of 5.8 million, including those watching on ITV+1.
Irish actor Turner has won legions of fans with his brooding role as Captain Ross Poldark, and his topless scything has become one of the drama’s most famous moments.
In the new series, Poldark faces capital crimes while he and his wife Demelza (Eleanor Tomlinson) are still dealing with the death of their daughter Julia.
However, the latest instalment of the series saw him announced a free man after fending off accusations of plundering a ship.
Victoria sees Coleman star as the young monarch inheriting the throne at the age of 18. The drama also stars Rufus Sewell as prime minister Lord Melbourne and Tom Hughes as Prince Albert.