First season averaged 4.2 million viewers

A&E has announced a second-season renewal for its recovery drama “The Cleaner.”

Skein, which stars former “Law & Order” regular Benjamin Bratt as an “extreme interventionist” who tracks down and helps struggling addicts, averaged 4.2 million viewers over its maiden 13 episodes.

The first original scripted series in the most recent iteration of the channel formerly known as Arts & Entertainment, “The Cleaner,” produced by CBS Paramount, was inspired by the success of the net’s tough-love reality hour, “Intervention.”

“We have worked very hard to move A&E from the more traditional model of a performance-based arts network to a premium kind of entertainment network,” said A&E prexy and general manager Bob DeBitetto.

Citing “Intervention” and “The Cleaner” as standard-bearers of the “real-life drama” motto the net introduced last summer, he said of the renewal, “The show is driving the way we want people to think of A&E going forward; it was an easy call.”

Moreover, DeBitetto added, the two recovery-based skeins are of a conceptual piece with the channel’s “CSI: Miami” reruns, its recent deal to acquire CBS’ “Criminal Minds” in off-net syndication and its next original drama, “The Beast,” an FBI procedural starring Patrick Swayze and set to debut in January.

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