Did Death in Paradise get murdered in the ratings without Danny John-Jules?

Erm, no!

Death in Paradise didn’t suffer in the ratings despite the loss of Danny John-Jules as Office Dwayne Myers – one of the show’s most popular characters.

The Caribbean murder mystery drama has been a consistent hit for BBC1 and not even Dwayne’s departure could stop it pulling in a whopping six million viewers, according to Broadcast.

Star Ardal crouches on a beach in the new series of Death in Paradise

Ardal was back on the case last night as Jack in Death in Paradise

That figure was slightly behind the 6.4 million who tuned into the opening episode of the last series, but that’s still a lot of people!

The first murder of the series took place on a bus – the victim was travelling with three fellow passengers plus the driver, and nobody saw anything untoward.

And yet when they arrived at their destination they discovered that he’d been stabbed…

Meanwhile, the upcoming second episode will see a typically whacky plot with DI Jack Mooney (played by Ardal O’Hanlon) investigating the mysterious death of a zoo owner killed by a tranquilliser dart.

Dwayne’s replacement also arrives, the Commissioner’s niece, Ruby Patterson (played by newcomer Shyko Amos).

Death in Paradise - Ruby

Ruby will arrive in the second episode of the new series

Don Warrington, who plays the Commissioner, said his character is “very indulgent” towards his niece, adding: “He thinks that Ruby is very good and has raw talent but she has a few lessons to learn which she will be taught by Jack.”

Meanwhile, while fans will miss the humour Dwayne brought to the show, it looks like they will keep watching. Explaining the reason behind his departure, Danny said: “I left Death in Paradise because I wanted to get back on stage. I needed a bit more razzmatazz in my life, and then along came Strictly!”

The long January nights certainly seemed to have encouraged people to stay in to watch the telly, with Sheridan Smith’s new drama Cleaning Up also scoring big ratings earlier this week.

Death in Paradise continues on BBC1.