ITV’s new show Jekyll & Hyde kicked off last Sunday with an episode so scary it's caused a bit of controversy for airing at teatime. While you might think the story of a Doctor who takes some dodgy medicine and turns into a monster isn't exactly kids TV, the 6.30pm airing time tricked many families into tuning in, and they were NOT impressed.
The series marks an attempt to spice things up for ITV as it veers away from its traditional, quaint Sunday evening staples, such as Doc Martin, and opts for a more gruesome fantasy-driven horror. However, the violence attracted 280 disgruntled complaints to ITV and a further 212 to Ofcom after the series' debut.
Admittedly, episode 1 – the first of a 10-part miniseries – did carry warnings beforehand, but that didn’t stop concerned viewers (largely irate parents) being annoyed at what their impressionable kids were witnessing...
#JekyllandHyde bit too violent in my opinion for 6.30pm when kids are watching @ITVOctober 25, 2015
#JekyllandHyde ...and good luck getting the kids to sleep tonight. Have a feeling the airtime will undergo a swift rethinkOctober 25, 2015
Well I'm still having nightmares about dogs with men's heads after ITV's teatime #JekyllandHyde. I expect kids are made of sterner stuff.October 26, 2015
The television company said: "ITV issued a warning before the transmission of Jekyll & Hyde advising the parents of younger children they may find some scenes scary.” However, the fact that ITV Player states the content is for over 18s does raise the question, why was it aired several hours before the 9pm watershed?
ITV has refused to change the airing time in the wake of the complaints so, it might be time to put the kids to bed early and enjoy a bit of gruesome telly on your own. Starring Tom Bateman, Richard E Grant and Natalie Gumede, Jekyll & Hyde airs on ITV, Sundays at 6.30pm.