OWN’s Tyler Perry soap “The Haves and the Have Nots” kicked off its second season Tuesday with series highs and one of the largest audiences for any telecast in network history.

The sophomore-season premiere of the series about the powerful Cryer family and the hired help who work in their Savannah, Ga., mansion, averaged 2.78 million viewers in the 9 o’clock hour Tuesday — topping the show’s previous high of 2.6 million for its first-season finale last September.

Tuesday’s audience was a whopping 57% higher than that of the show’s series premiere last May (1.82 million).

Among all OWN programming since its January 2011 debut, only a pair of “Oprah’s Next Chapter” interviews — with Bobbi Kristina Houston and Lance Armstrong — have been more popular.

Even more impressive is the show’s performance among the network’s target demo of women 25-54. After setting series highs with each of its final eight episodes last summer, “Haves” on Tuesday established another best when 1.1 million in that demo tuning in (trailing only Oprah Winfrey’s sit-down with Houston in March 2012).

Among all cable programs Tuesday night, “Haves” ranked second among women 25-54, behind only the premiere of “Being Mary Jane” on BET.

“The Haves and the Have Nots” was a key player for OWN in 2013 as the network posted its second straight year of double-digit gains. According to Nielsen, it ranked as the 40th most popular cable network in primetime, 38th in adults 18-49 and 37th in adults 25-54.