'Affair' Tallies Top L+3 Gain for Showtime Series' Bow

Showtime’s The Affair has some legs – not to mention other body parts.

The premium network’s new original show registered the best-ever live + 3-day bump for a series debut.  

Starring Dominic West, Maura Tierney and Ruth Wilson, The Affair’s Oct. 12 premiere at 10 p.m. garnered 507,000 live+same-day viewers, according to Nielsen. Gauged on a live+3 basis, the bow tacked on another 285,000 watchers to reach 792,000, a 56% jump. Showtime officials said that was the live+3 lift for any of its series’ debuts.

Similarly, The Affair improved significantly on its premiere night: the 809,000 for live+same-day rose 51% on live+3 measure, tacking on 412,000 watchers, bringing Sunday-night total to 1.22 million. The live+3 edge was tops for a Showtime series debut, according to network officials.

The amelioration by The Affair underscores the nation's predilection toward more delayed viewing: the fifth season live + same-day premiere of AMC's The Walking Dead scored the largest audience for a cable drama in history with some 17.3 million watchers, before another 5 million were counted via the live+ 3 measurement.  

Counting the live+3 adds, The Affair accumulated 1.68 million linear viewers for the show’s Sunday-night opening.  However, when on-demand and Showtime Anywhere views from authenticated platforms are accounted for, the tally reaches 2.5 million – and counting.  

Through Thursday, Oct. 16, The Affair’s on-demand action had already surpassed that of Penny Dreadful by 6%, Masters of Sex by 9% and Ray Donovan by 24% to become Showtime’s rookie series performer in that regard.

Gauged on authenticated platforms only, Showtime said The Affair’s pilot was 90%, 130% and 140% greater than the bows of Penny Dreadful, Ray Donovan and Masters of Sex, respectively.