After delivering a curiosity-fueled series high number last week, “American Horror Story: Freak Show” was due to take a ratings hit in week two.
And take a ratings hit it did.
Episode two of the latest “AHS” cycle drew a 2.3 adults 18-49 rating with 4.52 million viewers. Both the demo and viewership numbers trailed those of last week’s episode by 26%.
While a week two drop is nothing new for “AHS”–all three previous cycles endured sizable post-premiere losses–this week’s drop was the biggest on record.
The second episode of 2013’s “American Horror Story: Coven,” for instance, trailed its premiere by 17% in the adults 18-49 demographic and by 18% in the viewership column.
That episode, in fact, drew a stronger adults 18-49 rating (and comparable viewership) than this week’s “Freak Show” episode despite following a lesser-watched premiere.
While a 26% drop is impossible to ignore, it is worth noting that Wednesday’s “Freak Show” was cable’s #1 program by a convincing margin. It was also the top-rated broadcast of any kind in the 10PM hour.
And insofar as “American Horror Story” performs well on DVR, FX will neither sweat this performance nor regret its decision to book a fifth “AHS” season.