After only three episodes into its freshman year, HBO has renewed the Dwayne Johnson-starring comedy series, Ballers, for a second season.
According to an official press release from HBO, Ballers‘ first episode brought in 8.9 million viewers during its premiere airing, and an additional 5.6 million from those who watched it via Johnson’s Facebook page. HBO’s president of original programming, Michael Lombardo, announced today that the show was renewed, and he believes a lot of its success comes from its cast.
“The charismatic and hugely talented Dwayne Johnson, along with the rest of the Ballers cast, has truly struck a chord with the HBO audience. We are thrilled with the overwhelming response the series has received and look forward to another exciting season.”
Ballers premiered to mostly positive reviews. At the time of this publication, the HBO series stands at 80 percent approval on Rotten Tomatoes with 35 of 44 reviews considered as “fresh.”
Johnson is no stranger to television work, having spent years with the WWE as his alter ego, The Rock. But Ballers marks the first time the action star has served as a lead actor for a scripted television program.
NPR‘s Eric Deggans wrote that Johnson is “smoothly charming” in Ballers.
“The world of blockbuster movies might write bigger paychecks, but The Rock may have missed his calling as a television star with the skill to keep a character compelling week after week.”
Grantland‘s Andy Greenwald gave praise to the casting as well, but he also said Ballers feels too similar to past HBO shows.
“It’s a shame [the characters’] personal drama keeps getting submerged in the spillover from the Arli$$ and Entourage Jacuzzi: fast cars, loose groupies, and bros being bros. Ballers feels caught between the hard show it might become and the easy one it’s happy enough to be.”
Ballers has seven episodes left in its freshman year, including the one that airs this Sunday, July 12, at 10 p.m. With HBO now having renewed the series, cast members took to Twitter to announce the news and to thank the fans.
— Jazmyn Simon (@JazmynSimon) July 10, 2015
— Donovan W. Carter (@dcsofly90) July 10, 2015
Are you excited that HBO has renewed Ballers for another season?
[Image credit: HBO via YouTube screencap]