‘American Horror Story’ Hits Series High Ratings In Episode 4

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via press release:

There’s a long list of superlatives to describe FX’s performance last night, inclusive of the fourth episode of American Horror Story as well as the broadcast premiere of Twilight.  American Horror Story delivered its most-watched telecast to date in all key 18-34/18-49 demos as well as in W25-54.  It also ranked as the most-watched program last night in basic cable in P/W18-49, W18-34, and P/W 25-54.  The broadcast premiere of Twilight was the #4-ranked program of the night in P18-49 and was #2 in W18-49 and #3 in W18-34.  The combo of AHS and Twilight ranked FX #1 for the night in basic cable in P/W/M18-49, P/W18-34, and W25-54 … and #2 in M18-34 and P25-54.  All data is Live+Same Day 000s; complete data sets attached.


Week to Week Trending and Key Competitive

American Horror Story grew week to week across the board and set series highs in all 18-49/18-34 breaks and in W25-54.

  • P18-49 gained +12% (2,035[P]>1,751>1,955>2,190) with M18-49 up +7% and W18-49, +16%.
  • P18-34 picked up +2% (1,189[P]>1,010>1,249>1,275) with M18-34 even and W18-34, +4%.
  • P25-54 increased +14% (1,806[P]>1,397>1,576>1,796) with M25-54 up +9% and W25-54, +19%.

Of note, only two FX dramas in their premiere season have posted a higher Week 4 P18-49 delivery than their series premiere:  American Horror Story (by +8%, 2,035[P]>2,190) and Nip/Tuck (+10%, 2,030>2,227)!


Key Competitive (P18-49):



  • Comedy Central: South Park/Nick Swardson’s Pretend Time recovered +16% week to week (1,508 vs. 1,305).
  • USA: Psych gained +13% (1,451 vs. 1,282).
  • Spike: Ultimate Fighter eased -3% (1,200 vs. 1,237).
  • TBS: Big Bang Theory rose +11% (1,056 s. 948).
  • MTV: Real World was in range of prior week (1,031 vs. 1,044).
  • Adult Swim: American Dad inched up +5% (950 vs. 901).
  • Discovery: Penn & Teller Tell A Lie jumped +24% (920 vs. 742).
  • TLC: Extreme Couponing vaulted +51% (902 vs. 596)


  • ABC: Revenge gained +8% (3,437 vs. 3,194).
  • CBS: A repeat of C.S.I. fell -25% from last week’s original episode (2,534 vs. 3,388).
  • NBC: A repeat of Prime Suspect dropped -63% from an original L&O: SVU (1,025 vs. 2,773).


Vs. Lead-in

Lead-in movie, the broadcast premiere of Twilight delivered American Horror Story its second most-watched lead-in in P18-49 (1,474) behind the broadcast premiere of Transformers 2 (1,973) which led into the series premiere.  From there, American Horror Story vaulted +49% (2,190 vs. 1,474).


Rank in its Basic Cable Time Period (Wednesday, 1000 – 1100P)

AHS ranked #1 or #2 in its basic cable time period across the board, same as last week:  #1 in P/W18-49, P/W18-34, the trifecta in P/M/W 25-54; AHS ranked #2 in M18-49/18-34 and Total Viewers.

  • In P18-49, AHS ranked a VERY decisive #1 (2,190) ? ahead of South Park/Nick Swardson on Comedy Central by +45% (1,508);Psych on USA by +51% (1,451); Ultimate Fighter in Spike by +83% (1,200); Big Bang Theory on TBS by +107% (1,056), and  Real World on MTV by +112% (1,031).
  • In P18-34, AHS ranked #2 in the time period outright (1,295) ? behind Revenge on ABC (1,454) but ahead of South Park/Nick Swardson on Comedy Central (1,079).
  • In M18-49, AHS also ranked #2 in the time period outright (1,024) ? behind South Park/Nick Swardson (1,114) but ahead of Revenge (1,019).


Quarter Hours were very good.

  • P18-49:    +3% (2,101>2,327>2,173>2,158)
  • W18-49:   -5% (1,167>1,237>1,151>1,107)
  • M18-49:   +13% (935>1,090>1,021>1,052)


Median Age/Audience Composition

  • Median Age:  Week 4 was 34 ? within range of the prior three weeks (32-36).
  • Gender Skew:  percent (%) male/female split was 44/55, slightly more female than the current season norm (48/52), this a likely function of its very female-skewing Twilight lead-in.


Rank for the Night in Basic Cable

American Horror Story ranked #1 or #2 among all basic cable programs last night across the board:  #1 in P/W18-49, W18-34, and P/W25-54; and #2 in M18-49, P/M18-34, and M25-54.

  • In P18-49, American Horror Story (2,190) ranked #1 ? ahead of South Park by +6% (2,062) and Psych on USA by +51% (1,451).  Our own Twilight ranked #4 (1,350) followed by NCIS on USA (1,227), Storage Wars on A&E (1,213), and The Ultimate Fighter on Spike (1,200).
  • In W18-49, American Horror Story ranked #1 (1,166) followed by Twilight (803), Psych (803), and Extreme Cooking on TLC (733).


American Horror Story and Twilight ranked FX in basic cable’s top three last night across the board:  the trifecta #1 in 18-49 (P/M/W), P/W18-34, and W25-54; #2 in M18-34 and P25-54; and #3 in M25-54 and Total Viewers.

  • In P18-49, FX (1,656) ranked #1 with a +37% advantage over #2-ranked USA (1,205); +67% over #3-ranked A&E (991); +71% over Comedy Central (968) and TBS (968); and +311% over #20-ranked TNT (403).
    • Last night (1,656) repped FX’s most-watched night since Oct. 5th (1,849) ? the premiere of American Horror Story and the broadcast premiere of Transformers 2.
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