BBC axes flop newspaper drama Press after it scrapes just two million viewers.

IT was one of the most unrealistic representations of the newspaper industry ever created, leaving print journalists furious at their profession being smeared.

And it seems BBC1 bosses were just as unimpressed by irresponsible drama Press, because they’ve axed it after just one series.

 BBC1's newspaper drama Press will not return for a second series due it being a ratings flop

BBC1's newspaper drama Press will not return for a second series due it being a ratings flopCredit: BBC

The show, which aired last year, presented a warped view of two newspapers — one broadsheet, the other a tabloid. It was a big ratings flop.

Execs had been hoping it would be a hit, given it was written by Mike Bartlett, the creator of highly-rated drama Doctor Foster.

A TV insider said: “Expectations were high as Mike is now considered to be among the premier league of television drama writers.

“Bosses were hoping that Mike might bring some of the magic that made Doctor Foster such a huge success with viewers.

 The show boasted a talented cast - including Charlotte Riley and Ben Chaplin - but in the end it was 'too ridiculous to be taken seriously'

The show boasted a talented cast - including Charlotte Riley and Ben Chaplin - but in the end it was 'too ridiculous to be taken seriously'Credit: BBC

“But it was felt that Press didn’t attract an audience because it was too ridiculous to be taken seriously.”

A BBC spokesman said: “To make room for new shows, we sometimes have to make difficult decisions about which dramas to recommission.

“Unfortunately Press won’t be returning.”

They added: “We’re proud of the show and look forward to Mike’s new drama ‘Life’ coming soon to BBC One.”

 Execs had thought the show would be a hit as it was written by Mike Bartlett, the creator of highly-rated Doctor Foster

Execs had thought the show would be a hit as it was written by Mike Bartlett, the creator of highly-rated Doctor FosterCredit: Getty

Press had a number of unbelievable storylines, such as one where an ambitious young reporter was ordered to “out” a deceased footballer to his grieving family.

This does not reflect modern print journalism. But perhaps it explains why the drama, starring David Suchet, Ben Chaplin and Charlotte Riley, was scraping just over two million viewers in a prime-time Thursday night slot.

The last series of Doctor Foster, starring warring couple Suranne Jones and Bertie Carvel, got triple those figures.

It shows writer Mike can do better. Well, let’s face it, he couldn’t do much worse.

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Return of the big Mac

HE looks like he’s been hitting the gym, but it’s just Michael McIntyre sporting some supersized tailoring inspired by the Seventies.

The funnyman wears the glitzy outfit as he performs Abba-roke on the new series of Michael McIntyre’s Big Show which starts this Saturday on BBC1 at 8.10pm.

 Michael McIntyre looks like he's been hitting the gym...but in reality he's just sporting some supersized tailoring

Michael McIntyre looks like he's been hitting the gym...but in reality he's just sporting some supersized tailoringCredit: BBC

He gets band member and music legend Bjorn Ulvaeus on stage for the ultimate celebration of the fab Swedish four, not to mention roping in a few members of the audience.

It looks like mighty Michael is back with Ab-bang.

 For his new show, the comedian ropes in audience members for some embarrassing Abba-roke

For his new show, the comedian ropes in audience members for some embarrassing Abba-rokeCredit: BBC

 McIntyre could easily pass for one of the Abba gang with his sparkly Seventies-style suit

McIntyre could easily pass for one of the Abba gang with his sparkly Seventies-style suitCredit: Heilemann

bizbit

LOVE Island couple Arabella Chi and Wes Nelson are moving in together after three months of dating.

Model Arabella happily shared photos of her packed-up belongings with her half-million Instagram followers.

Mum in Sugar tat rap

THE mum of a candidate on The Apprentice has accused Lord Sugar of bullying her son after slagging off his tattoos.

Producers called Lewis Ellis’s mother Christine in a bid to pacify her, but she thinks the businessman’s actions were ill-judged in the wake of suicides linked to Love Island and The Jeremy Kyle Show.

 The mum of Apprentice candidate Lewis Ellis has accused Lord Sugar of bullying her son over his tattoos

The mum of Apprentice candidate Lewis Ellis has accused Lord Sugar of bullying her son over his tattoosCredit: Refer to Caption

 Lord Sugar had tweeted about how 'horrific' he believed the marketing manager looked, which prompted a flood of online hate towards Lewis

Lord Sugar had tweeted about how 'horrific' he believed the marketing manager looked, which prompted a flood of online hate towards LewisCredit: BBC

Lewis stripped down to swimming shorts for last week’s episode, for a campaign task to promote summertime in Finland.

It prompted Lord Sugar to tweet about how “horrific” he believed the marketing manager looked, causing a flood of hate online to Lewis.

Christine said: “Since when has body shaming and bullying been the right thing to do to get publicity? He should be ashamed.

“After the deaths of people on those shows the BBC said they would do more to be aware of the mental health and well being of the participants. What have they done here? When are they ever going to learn? Thankfully my son is strong enough to deal with this – but I worry for others taking part who are less resilient.”

bizbit

WAR Of The Worlds’ Rafe Spall didn’t read HG Wells’s novel to prepare for his role on the BBC1 drama, saying: “People who have read the book have an idea of it in their minds and you’re always going to set yourself up for a fall.”


C5 is just taking the pee

CHANNEL 5 is renowned for its zany programmes, but new show The Great British Urine Test has outdone the rest.

The 90-minute special will see medical experts take to the streets, where they persuade members of the public to pee in a pot.

 Channel 5 is treating viewers to a new show where medical experts take to the streets and persuade members of the public to pee in a pot

Channel 5 is treating viewers to a new show where medical experts take to the streets and persuade members of the public to pee in a potCredit: Getty

They then analyse the sample to reveal exactly what the providers have been up to, or what health issues their bodily fluid reveals.

A source said: “Tests on a person’s urine can reveal everything from illicit drug use to bad eating to a range of kidney disorders, liver conditions, diabetes, infections and pregnancy.”

This is taking things a wee bit too far if you ask me.

bizticker

  • Stranger Things’ Finn Wolfhard says his band Calpurnia have split
  • Hollyoaks’ actress Jessica Fox is engaged

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