‘Blue Planet II’ is the most-watched British TV show of 2017

David Attenborough-narrated BBC wildlife series premiered on October 29

Blue Planet II is the UK’s most-watched TV show of the year so far.

The first episode of the David Attenborough-narrated BBC wildlife series, which aired on October 29, was watched by 14.1 million people. Last night’s episode, meanwhile, brought in an average overnight audience of 10.8 million.

The series opener attracted over 2 million more people than the 11.63 million that watched the One Love Manchester charity concert in June.


As well as being the highest viewed show of 2017, it’s also the third most-watched show of the past five years behind the 2014 World Cup final and last year’s Great British Bake Off final.

Blue Planet II also brought in more viewers than the 12.28 million viewers that watched the October 28 episode of Strictly Come Dancing.

Meanwhile, the new series of Blue Planet II is soundtracked by an orchestral reworking of Radiohead’s ‘Bloom’.

Thom Yorke recently said of the series: “That whole thing for me, the idea of discovering life that humanity doesn’t know about, is to me one of the most profound kind of things, profound concepts. Even if it’s discovering fossils, or the idea that creatures exist – that there’s a history to the place we live that we don’t know anything about – to me is the most profound, spiritual expression of humanity when we discover it.”

Blue Planet – the original series – was probably the thing, first it turned on my son to the whole thing, and he became obsessed… then a letter from Greenpeace came through about something or other to the house, and he started reading it and said ‘Dad, can we get involved in this’? Yeah, sure if you want to. So then we established links with Greenpeace. Anyway, I got involved in all this stuff over the years, and it started with being half asleep on the sofa watching Blue Planet!”