ITV’s new fantasy drama, 'Jekyll and Hyde’, which debuted on Sunday evening, has already run into controversy after amassing over 500 complaints. The complaints were due to the programme’s level of violence and gore which shocked many viewers watching in the 6.30pm time slot.

Richard E GrantRichard E. Grant stars 'Jekyll and Hyde' on ITV.

According to The Guardian, ITV said it received 280 complaints, while 263 people contacted broadcasting regulator Ofcom to voice their concerns. An ITV spokesperson commented that a warning was shown before the beginning of show “advising the parents of younger children they may find some scenes scary”.

In the episode a man was shown being bludgeoned to death within the first minute. Other scenes showed a man being shot in the stomach and another featured one being burned. Starting on November 1st the show will be moving to 7pm but the Guardian reports there are currently no plans to move the show to after 9pm for the reminder of its 10-episode run.

Based on the Robert Louis Stevenson novel, the series stars Tom Bateman as the nephew of the original Dr Jekyll in 1930s. It also features Richard E Grant as the leader of a government organisation. The series was written by Charlie Higson, who is most famous for helping create ‘The Fast Show’.

More: ITV Set to Make Charlie Higson's 10-Part 'Jekyll and Hyde' Adventure

Commenting on the complaints a spokesperson for Ofcom said, “We will assess these complaints before deciding whether to investigate or not.” But despite the complaints the premiere proved to be a ratings hit, with an average audience of 3.4 million tuning in, giving it a 15.6% share of TV viewing between 6.30pm and 7.30pm.

Creator Charlie Higson had said before the debut episode that he believed children would be happy with the show's dark tone. “Kids will be happy with it, they love all that stuff,” Higson told The Guardian. “You never want to dumb it down.”

“There’s enough fantasy element to it. We don’t do squirting blood, torn-off limbs. [But] kids know what they can deal with. I’ve always maintained it is good to scare children.” The show’s first episode is now available to view on the ITV Player but it comes with a restricted viewing warning.