Poldark's Eleanor Tomlinson discusses rivalry with ITV's Victoria: 'It's a real shame'

Poldark star Eleanor Tomlinson has said it was a "real shame" to schedule the second series of the BBC drama at the same time as ITV rival, Victoria. Claiming the latest series of Poldark would have been more popular with viewers, the 24-year-old - who plays heroine Demelza Poldark - expressed her frustration in a new interview with Radio Times. "I think it's a real shame that they came out at the same time," she confessed. "It doesn't make any sense to me. I think it did split the audience. At the end we were equal and that's really good. I think Poldark pulled through."

Poldark went head-to-head with Victoria, which sees Jenna Coleman take on the role of the young Queen Victoria, during Sunday evening's prime-time slot last autumn. "I think series two was equally as interesting as series one, if not better," added Eleanor. "I think the storylines were stronger. I think the public were able to connect with the characters better and see them on the journey of life and marriage and I think that's more interesting than naked scything personally."

Poldark's Eleanor Tomlinson has talked about rivalry with ITV's Victoria

The BBC period drama, set on the Cornish moors in the 18th century, follows miner Ross Poldark and his romantic woes with his first love Elizabeth Chynoweth and wife Demelza as well as his attempt to restore his own fortunes by reopening a derelict mine. The first season, a reinvention of the 1975 programme, was an unexpected hit for the BBC in 2015. But last year, Victoria became the new Sunday night prime-time drama, pulling in an average of 7.7 million viewers each week. It was recently announced that Jenna and her real-life and on-screen love interest Tom Hughes will return in the second series of Victoria as well as a 2017 Christmas special. The biopic will follow Victoria as she learns how to balance raising children with her duties as a wife and as a monarch.

Victoria became the new Sunday night prime-time drama last year

Victoria was also dubbed the "next Downton Abbey" especially as the model of having a Christmas special follows that of the ITV drama. Screenwriter Daisy Goodwin previously said she hopes her show has the potential. "Downton Abbey is the world's greatest series," she told HELLO! Online and other media outlets at the Victoria press launch last year. "They're very big shoes to fill. I love Sunday night telly so if people enjoy watching this as much as they did Downton then I feel my work is done."

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