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The Traitors viewers saying the same thing about 'epic' series 2 debut as show returns with major twist

Claudia Winkleman welcomed 22 new recruits to the Scottish Highlands

Tracey in The Traitors series two© Studio Lambert
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
January 4, 2024
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The highly-anticipated second series of The Traitors returned to BBC One on Thursday night and it's safe to say viewers are absolutely loving the new series. 

The "epic" first episode saw Claudia Winkleman reprise her role as host, welcoming a brand new batch of hopeful contestants to the Scottish Highlands for a chance to win a £120,000 cash prize. 

Claudia Winkleman in tweed jakcet stood in front of round wooden table© Mark Mainz
Claudia Winkleman welcomed 22 new contestants to Scotland

As per the first series, Claudia held interviews with all of the participants before selecting her three traitors. But in a shocking twist to the format, the Strictly star later revealed that the traitors must select a fourth player to join their team. 

[Spoilers for episode one ahead!]

Using her secret shoulder squeeze, Claudia chose business manager Paul, British Army engineer Harry and events coordinator, Ash as the first three traitors. 

After discovering that a fourth traitor would be joining them, Paul, Harry and Ash decided that the new recruit should be one of four players: veterinary nurse Miles, insurance broker Andrew, and retired teacher Diane and volunteer business mentor Sonja. 

Paul, Ash, Harry in The Traitors© Studio Lambert
Paul, Ash, Harry were selected as the first three Traitors

Fans were left shocked by the new twist and took to social media to share their reactions. "Oooh game format twist, four traitors and one is a traitor pick," wrote one person, while another viewer added: "OUR TRAITORS ON THE FIRST NIGHT ??"

A third person penned: "Wait, they have to potentially bring in ANOTHER traitor already?! Omg," while another was slightly skeptical and shared their reservations: "Four Traitors seems like too many... It won't be long until one gets thrown under the bus."

Claudia Winkleman with the contestants in The Traitors series two© Studio Lambert
Viewers praised the "epic" first episode

This wasn't the only twist to the format, however, as the contestants got the chance to grab a shield in the challenge, which would protect them from being murdered. 

At the end of the first episode, which saw the contestants successfully bank £15,000 for the prize pot, the traitors were tasked with selecting their first victim. 

The series two premiere concluded with a major cliffhanger, leaving the identity of the fourth traitor unknown, as well as the first murder victim. 

Taking to X, viewers hailed the new series as "amazing", with many taking to BBC iPlayer to binge-watch the next two episodes. 

SEE: Claudia Winkleman's sweetest moments with three children in ultra-rare photos

Ross, Evie, Jasmine, Andrew, Zack, Jaz, Ash, Kyra, Mollie, Charlotte, Charlie, Diane, Claudia Winkleman, Miles, Meg, Tracey, Paul, Brian, Jonny, Aubrey, Harry, Anthony, Sonja on The Traitors© Studio Lambert
The contestants bagged £15,000 for the prize pot

One person wrote: "What an amazing first #TheTraitors episode to kick off this season," while another added: "Watched the first three episodes of #TheTraitors. I thought series two wouldn't be a patch on series one, but the end of episode three was absolutely amazing!!! Gutted that I'll have to wait ages now to find out what happens in episode four!"

The series, which consists of 12 episodes, will air on BBC One every Wednesday, Thursday and Friday evening, with the final episode revealing who walks away with the huge cash prize. But who will win? 

In series one, three faithfuls, ​Aaron, Hannah and Meryl, managed to banish the traitors and win the series.

WATCH: Wilf is revealed to be a traitor in The Traitors series one finale

It looks like history could repeat itself as the faithfuls are currently the favourites to win with 1/2 odds, according to

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