The Big Brother-meets-Catfish social experiment was watched by a total audience of 1.3 million between 9.15pm and 10.30pm, according to BARB ratings figures from Channel 4. This was in line with what a show would usually attract at that time, and was up 30% on 2018’s debut episode.
As with last year’s series, The Circle proved popular with young viewers. Half a million 16-34 year olds tuned in to watch, winning the slot in the demographic. The 500,000 young viewers was also up 26% on last year’s first instalment.
Presented by Emma Willis in the UK, The Circle plays on social media tropes by giving individuals from all walks of life a platform to compete in a popularity contest to win a cash prize.
They live in one modern block but separately in individual apartments, interacting with one another exclusively through a bespoke voice-activated social media platform called The Circle.
The aim of the game is to avoid being judged least popular by the rest of The Circle, and contestants can adopt any persona they wish to propel themselves through the competition. Last year’s show was won by a man impersonating his girlfriend.
Studio Lambert produces the show alongside Motion Content Group, the WPP-backed program funder.