A cable drama series launched its new season with a record-breaking viewer turnout Wednesday night. Deadline.com reports that FX’s "American Horror Story: Coven" — the third season of the Ryan Murphy-Brad Falchuk anthology — got off to a strong start.
"About 5.54 million [viewers] — and 3.87% of the country’s 18- to 49-year-olds — tuned in to watch Kathy Bates give Jessica Lange a run for her scenery-chewing money as early 19th century New Orleans grand dame Madame LaLaurie who, when not leading society, kills time peeling the skin off the faces of her slaves, or turning them into minotaurs," the story reports.
The piece adds: "It’s the most-watched telecast ever in the ‘American Horror Story’ franchise — and, when Live+7 stats come around, stands a good chance of becoming the most-watched program in FX history. Add in last night’s repeats of the season debut and FX clocked nearly 8 million viewers and 5.4 million viewers aged 18-49."
The hot start for season three should come as a relief to producers after a lackluster season two.
"The FX anthology horror drama had ended its sophomore season with fewer viewers than its first season, which in a typical drama series, is not a good sign," Deadline notes. "Last season’s scarefest, ‘American Horror Story: Asylum,’ opened with a completely different storyline and an average audience 2.3 million viewers (a 1.3 rating in the 18-49 demo) — 40% short of the franchise’s record-breaking first-season premiere crowd of 3.85 million, and 28% shy of the first-season ender’s 3.22 million."