ITV2 comedy panel show Celebrity Juice beat BBC2 and Channel 4 on its return – but was more than half a million down on its last series debut.

Celebrity Juice (ITV2) 10pm-10.45pm
1.48m (7.93%) / 315k (3.03%) +1

The show, hosted by comedy character Keith Lemon, returned for an eighth series with regular captains Holly Willoughby and Fearne Cotton joined by singer Ronan Keating, athlete Greg Rutherford, actress Kelly Brook and comedian Chris Ramsay.

It’s strong performance put it ahead of BBC2 doc The Boss is Back (690k) and C4’s Paralympics coverage (1.39m), and it also came close to topping the ITV News at Ten (1.55m).

Celebrity Juice also topped ITV2’s slot average of 965k (5.1%).

However, it could not match series seven’s record-breaking opener of 2.02m / 268k +1 on 9 February 2012.

The seventh series was the strongest yet for Celebrity Juice, produced by Talkback, which only dipped below the 1.5m mark three times across its 13-part run.

Celebrity Juice
Series openers

102-09-08243k (1.46%)
225-02-09324k (1.85%)
318-03-10255k (1.48%)
409-09-10688k (3.74%)
510-02-11955k (5.02%)
601-09-111.11m (5.41%)
709-02-122.03m (10.38%)
830-08-121.48m (7.93%)