Sons of Anarchy fifth season premieres tonight on FX at 10p ET/PT. Its fourth season premiere on September 6, 2011 drew a series high 4.9 million viewers and a 2.5 adults 18-49 rating in live plus same day DVR viewing. Many, including show creator Kurt Sutter, wondered whether a "Netflix effect "allowed people to catch on to the show and then make it appointment viewing. I'm not sure about that mostly because it's a serial show and heading into the fourth season premiere, the third season of SOA wasn't yet available on Netflix. Similarly, season four is not yet available heading into tonight's fifth season premiere. Plus (sadly) I have absolutely no idea what SOA's Netflix viewing trends are.
So it's hard to say what role Netflix had, but either way last year's season premiere scored series high ratings. What will happen this year? The season four finale on December 6, 2011 averaged a 2.1 adults 18-49 rating and 4.244 million viewers.