Dear Kathy Bates,
Me again – writing to make sure you’re aware that last night, the season finale of your FX miniseries American Horror Story: Coven attracted nearly 6 million viewers counting its premiere run and encores — and that nearly 4 million of them were 18-49-year-olds. Hope you’re also aware it’s the most watched AHS finale ever — 85% better than the AHS: Asylum finale in overall audience and 72% in the demo — and that, overall, Coven is the most watched in the AHS franchise.
Maybe more important to you. The full season ranks among the Top-20 shows on TV in delivery of 18-49 year olds, and among the Top 5 in cable.
The first run of the season finale episode delivered more than 4 million viewers — nearly 3 million of whom fell into that key age bracket. Of course, I’m sure you know initial numbers don’t tell the whole story, since your show is one of the more heavily DVR’d. And, through 10 weeks on a Live+7 basis, American Horror Story: Coven has averaged more than 7 million overall viewers and more than 5 million demo viewers, to rank as the No. 3 scripted drama in basic cable, behind only The Walking Dead and Breaking Bad.
You’ve probably read that Ryan Murphy expressed his surprise at the franchise’s growth in this third iteration, given that “everybody” thought it would be the least watched because it was “so specific.” But that doesn’t take into account the ratings-magnet cast, including Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Angela Bassett, Lily Rabe, Emma Roberts, Gabourey Sidibe, Taissa Farmiga, Frances Conroy, and, of course, you.
Now for the cream: for the season to date — and these numbers will go up when Live + 7 numbers are factored in for the last couple episodes — AHS: Coven averaged 6.5 million viewers, with 4.5 million of them in the demo. Meanwhile, in your timeslot, NBC’s averaged 6.4 million viewers but only 2.1 million in the demo, with a programming macedoine that included Ironside, Law & Order; SVU, Dateline, Kelly Clarkson Christmas special, and Chicago P.D. But, best of all, while Coven’s median age for the season was 36.5 years, NBC’s melange of shows had a median age of 56.2 years.
In conclusion, congratulations on getting the last laugh on the network you said treated you and the rest of the creative team on Harry’s Law “like shit,” kicked you to the curb and “disrespected” you and your 7-11 million viewers” when it cancelled that drama series in spring 2012, at the end of its second season, though it was then the network’s most-watched drama series, because the network felt your show skewed too old, and of course, they did not own the show.