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Miniseries, Anthologies Fail to Grow Stale

RELATED:Special Report: Limited Series, Limitless Potential

Time-shifted data has a significant effect on the average ratings for scripted programming, and it’s no different when it comes to miniseries and anthology series. SundanceTV’s 2014 series The Honorable Woman averaged the fewest total viewers of the 10 mini/anthology series depicted at right. The eight-part Middle East political thriller averaged 127,000 total live-plus-same-day viewers, but tallied 294,000 live-plus-7-day viewers. That’s a 131% increase in average total viewers, thanks to L7 data.

FX’s American Horror Story: Freak Show is the top-rated and most-watched mini/anthology series since the start of 2014. Freak Show averaged 3.9 million total viewers on a live-plus-same- day basis and more than 7.6 million viewers live-plus-7-day. That’s a 95% bump in average total viewership.

Few cable series receive a more significant bump from time-shifted data than AHS. One that does might be fellow FX anthology Fargo. The original live-plus-same-day numbers for the Emmy-winning series doubled when measured on a live-plus-7-day basis. Season one averaged 1.9 million live-plus-same-day viewers. That number ballooned to around 3.8 million on a live-plus-7 basis. No wonder FX wants to do away with live-plus-same- day ratings.

HBO anthology series True Detective averaged 2.6 million live-plus-same- day viewers, but over 4 million per live-plus-7-day data.

History’s Sons of Liberty was cable’s most-watched and highest-rated miniseries over the past 12 months, averaging 3.1 million viewers on a live-plus-same-day basis, and 4.5 million live-plus-7-day viewers. Texas Rising also averaged 3.1 million live-plus-same-day viewers, but benefited less from time-shifted data, finishing its run with a 4.1 million live-plus-7-day average.

BET’s The Book of Negroes benefited the least from time-shifting, getting just an 18% bump from live-plus-7-day data. Spike TV’s Tut jumped 65% on a live-plus-7 basis, a more significant bump than Texas Rising, Sons of Liberty or Book of Negroes.