October 6, 2011

THE SKED: “American Horror Story” Ratings Moderately Scary

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Written by: Mitch Salem
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Ratings for last night’s premiere of AMERICAN HORROR STORY on FX are promising, if not overwhelming.  The show’s 10PM initial airing was watched by about 2 million people 18-49, which should equal something like a 1.5 rating in that demo; when the night’s 2 rebroadcasts are added, the number goes to 3.2 million people or around a 2.4 rating.

A couple of comparisons:  if rebroadcasts are included, this is slightly up from last season’s Sons of Anarchy average on FX, which had about 3 million 18-49 viewers, but in an apples-to-apples comparison of the 10PM airing only, it’s somewhat lower.  (However, as FX was quick to note, even the 10PM broadcast alone was higher than the 1.5 million 18-49s who watched the first broadcast of the Sons premiere, since that show built its audience over time.)  Comparing it within genre, though, the news is a bit less happy:  the first broadcast of the Walking Dead premiere on AMC was 80% higher than Horror Story‘s, with 3.6 million 18-49 viewers. 
Of course, Walking Dead went down a slight 10% in its second episode, an unusually good hold from a hyped premiere–and then continued to build after that.  If Horror Story can follow the same trajectory, FX will be happily horrified.  

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."