Thursday 19 September 2019

Taken Down builds on success of Love/Hate with an even bigger opening episode as 445,000 viewers tune in

Orla Fitzgerald and Lynn Rafferty in Taken Down
Orla Fitzgerald and Lynn Rafferty in Taken Down

Sean O'Grady

Love/Hate creator Stuart Carolan still has the magic touch, as his latest crime series Taken Down has debuted to 445,000 viewers.

The series' first episode aired on Sunday night and was watched by a 34pc share of the available audience at the time.

The show also had 6,000 more viewers than the first episode of Love/Hate, which aired in 2010.

Taken Down follows the police investigation of the death of a young Nigerian migrant whose body is found abandoned near a direct provision centre, where refugees await the hope of asylum.

Aissa Maiga in RTE's Taken Down
Aissa Maiga in RTE's Taken Down

Former Love/Hate actress Lynn Rafferty leads the cast as Inspector Jen Rooney, while the series also stars Brian Gleeson, Orla Fitzgerald and Aissa Maiga.

The viewing figures are good news for the series.

Love/Hate aired for five series and saw its audience steadily grow until the finale.

The fourth series' opener was watched by more than 970,000 people, while the finale was seen by more than one million.

Taken Down co-creator and author Jo Spain believes the series will shine a light on the realities of direct provision centres.

"It's fairly shocking," she told The Ryan Tubridy Show on RTE Radio 1.

"I do think direct provision is something we will look back on in 10 years' time and say, 'how did that happen in our time?' - the same way we do with the mother and baby homes.

"It was set up in 1999, it was to be a short-term thing. I think they were saying it would be six months for an asylum to be processed.

"There are children being born into direct provision and they are being institutionalised."

Rafferty previously told how the team working on the show was sure to make it a success, but it was quite different from Carolan's previous work.

"It's the same team that has put it together, so all the ingredients are there to create another great drama, but Taken Down is its own beast," she said.

"The result has been an incredible script. It really is incredible storytelling."

Taken Down airs Sunday on RTE One at 9.30pm

Read more: Taken Down review: 'A bone-shaker of a final scene proves Carolan is as fond of pulling the rug out from under his audience as ever' 

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