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Killing Eve named as BBC iPlayer’s biggest show of the year (2019)

Killing Eve: Season 2

Story by Jack Foley

THE highly-anticipated second series of Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s gripping spy thriller Killing Eve has taken out the competition to become BBC iPlayer’s biggest series of the year.

The Golden Globe-nominated continuing battle between Eve and Villanelle achieved a staggering 40.4m requests on iPlayer, over 10m requests more than the next closest series.

Police thriller Line Of Duty’s fifth series took the second spot, with 27.4m requests, with period crime drama Peaky Blinders’ fifth series just behind it on 26.6m.

Killing Eve’s first series also makes the top 10 as people revisited the show or decided to find out what all the fuss was about, with 22.3m requests in 2019. Going back to 2018, the two series of Killing Eve combined have now generated a staggering 105m requests in total.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s other hit show this year, Fleabag, also features in the top ten. The second and final series is iPlayer’s biggest comedy of the year, with 20.3m requests for the series.

Other shows to make the top ten include favourites like Strictly Come Dancing, The Apprentice and MasterChef, as well as tense new drama The Capture, which was the year’s biggest new show.

For individual episodes, Line Of Duty’s return is currently in the top spot, with 5.9m requests, just edging out Peaky Blinders, which has had 5.8m requests so far, and the first episode of Killing Eve’s second series just behind on 5.5m. Killing Eve makes up the majority of the top ten episodes of the year.

There were also plenty of unmissable sporting and music events this year – the Wimbledon men’s singles final is the top live episode, with 1.6 million live stream requests, and Stormzy’s iconic Glastonbury headline set delivered 1.3m requests across both live and on-demand streams.

The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019 was another big success on iPlayer with 8.7m requests across the competition.

BBC iPlayer has also been proving increasingly popular with younger viewers. 2019 has seen almost a quarter (24%) of under 35-year olds visiting iPlayer in an average week, with titles like RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, Jesy Nelson: Odd One Out, The Rap Game and Waterloo Road proving particularly popular with younger audiences.

November marked the biggest ever month for iPlayer, with 439m requests. New fantasy drama His Dark Materials and landmark natural history series Seven Worlds, One Planet were the month’s biggest programmes, plus there were strong performances from Gold Digger, The Apprentice and The War Of The Worlds.

Charlotte Moore, Director of Content, BBC, says: “It’s been a huge year for BBC iPlayer – as well as record-breaking figures, it’s become an entertainment destination in its own right; and with approval for new programmes to be available for a minimum of 12 months, this will deliver real value for licence fee payers. In 2020 we will go even further to make it the best watch ever from binge-worthy series to the biggest live TV moments.”