The second episode of ITV1's new show Pushing Daisies will not be shown during the current run, the network has confirmed.

While the Golden Globe-nominated US series is nine episodes long, ITV1 has blamed a scheduling conflict on its decision to drop episode two from its broadcast.

Though the show has not been cancelled - after impressive opening viewing figures of 5.7 million on Saturday night - ITV1 audiences will not see the entirety of the series during this run, with episode three screened this Saturday night.

Pushing Daisies, which screened on ABC in the US, stars Lee Pace and British actress Anna Friel in an unusual tale of a pie maker whose ability to bring people back from the dead leads him into a lucrative sideline of solving murders, only for his life to grow increasingly complicated when he revives his childhood sweetheart.

Ned (Pace) can revive the dead with a single touch, but a second touch ends their life again, meaning that when he brings first love Chuck (Friel) back to life, he is unable to ever touch her again.

An ITV spokesman explained that episode two, which sees Ned exploring his unusual gift, was the obvious choice for omission as it is the "only self-contained episode with no serial elements".

The network has laid the blame for the scheduling mix-up at the feet of the Hollywood writers' strike, which saw only nine episodes of the first series of Pushing Daisies produced.

A usual run for a sitcom on ITV1 is six or eight weeks, the spokesman said, and as the network wanted a prime-time slot for Pushing Daisies and an eight-week slot was available, the decision was made to install the show in this time slot.

The spokesman added: "[Episode two] will definitely be shown either as part of a repeat run or as a stand-alone episode".

Pace and Friel were both nominated for Golden Globes for the series, with a second season due to begin shooting later this year.

15/04/2008 11:17:29