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Over 50 viewers contact RTÉ over 'disappointment and unhappiness' with Normal People

Rights to the show have been purchased in countries including Australia, Canada, and Japan.

RTÉ HAS BEEN contacted by more than 50 people with complaints about Normal People since it first aired last month. 

The 12-part series based on the bestseller of the same name from Irish author Sally Rooney stirred controversy due to sexual content in the show, despite continuing to attract up to half a million weekly viewers across network, digital and catch-up streaming platforms. 

The broadcaster confirmed it has received feedback from 51 viewers to date who expressed disappointment and unhappiness with the content of the show – up from the 37 informal complaints it received following the shows first airing on 28 April. 

A number of people also got in contact with RTÉ Radio 1′s Liveline programme three weeks ago to voice their concerns, describing the sexual content as “something you would expect to see in a porno”. 

But in spite of those concerns from some viewers, the show, which is also airing on the BBC in the UK, has been well-received and continues to attract hundreds of thousands of viewers each week.

The fourth instalment of Normal People – episodes seven and eight – had an overnight average of 298,000 viewers on television, with a 30.5% audience share. This number is expected to grow as week four of the drama continues to bring in catch-up viewers.

Last week, over 484,000 viewers, based on consolidated figures across a number of platforms, watched Normal People on RTÉ One with a 41.6% share, an increase of 64,000 viewers from the previous week.

An RTÉ spokesperson said: “We are proud to show the beautiful story about Connell and Marianne that has captured the hearts of many, particularly at a time when people at home need some entertainment and escapism.”

Meanwhile, Dublin-based Element Pictures which brought the novel to the screen is has signed off on plans to bring it to a broader international audience in the coming months. 

Rights to the series have been purchased in countries including Australia, Canada, Russia, and Japan. 

Ed Guiney and Andrew Lowe, executive producers of Normal People and co-founders of Element Pictures said: “The response from audiences in the UK, Ireland and the US to Normal People has been overwhelmingly positive. We are delighted that audiences around the world will now have the opportunity to see the show for themselves.”

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