Finding that sweet spot between the Season 9 finale of The Walking Dead last week and the beginning of the final season of Game of Thrones on April 14, Killing Eve hit an all-time series high with its Season 2 debut on Sunday.
The second season opener of the Sandra Oh and the Jodie Comer led spy thriller snagged 1.2 million viewers on April 7. That’s a rise of 67% in total viewers from its previous high of the Season 1 finale of the Phoebe Waller-Bridge developed series and 99% among adults 18-49 to a total of 327,000 in the key demo.
However, things were a little different this time round for Killing Eve from its Season 1 opener of April 8 last year. For one, there’s that historic Golden Globe win for Oh, the SAG Award the actor won for the acclaimed show (which was one of Deadline’s Top 5 New Shows of 2018) and all those BAFTA nominations. There’s also the apples to oranges fact that the Season 2 debut of Killing Eve got a much bigger bite this year with a simulcast on BBC America and AMC on Sunday.
Even with the much-anticipated debut available for preview on the AMC Premiere subscription service on April 5, the duel network approach juiced the tale of the obsessed MI5 officer and the stylish assassin to a 177% jump over the Season 1 opener – which was just shown on BBCA.
While a distilling of what the BBCA airing of Eve and the AMC screening pulled in respectively isn’t available yet, it is clear going large had a huge blast radius for the show.
In that context, it is worth noting that the first season of Killing Eve broke the small screen habit of the past decade. Instead of the declines that most shows see between their season debut and season finale, Killing Eve had an unbroken uptick in both the 18-49 and 25-54 demographics in its eight-episode first season.
Coming out of the gate so strong the second time round and with those awards under its arm, it was no wonder Entertainment Networks boss for AMC Networks Sarah Barnett announced yesterday that Killing Eve would be back for a third season next year – the numbers killed it.
In another rare move in this Peak TV Era, Killing Eve’s numbers were so sharp that it’s A Discovery of Witches lead-out had 1.1 million viewers for its BBC America and AMC opener on April 7 too. The Alex Kingston and Matthew Goode starring UK fantasy show had previously been playing on streaming service Shudder and Sundance Now.