Fox’s new horror-comedy series, Scream Queens, premiered to disappointing numbers, though the show gained incredible buzz on social media platforms such as Twitter. The night Scream Queens debuted, the show pulled in only 4 million viewers.
After three days, however, those numbers soared above expectations after audiences devoured the show across digital platforms, including Fox Now and Hulu. Fox says the audience for Scream Queens grew by 80 percent when the delayed digital viewing numbers were included.
Ryan Murphy, executive producer of Scream Queens, said, “The story of the fall is just how much people are time-shifting and watching programming in new and much more dramatic ways than even six months ago.”
@MrRPMurphy it is true. A lot of us don’t have cable, and won’t get it. Time to start moving with the times tv. Great show!
— Evan Kascak (@Evnkas) September 27, 2015
According to Variety, delayed, digital viewing numbers came in over the three days following the show’s premiere, and with those numbers added to the 4 million viewers, Scream Queens pulled in 7.3 million viewers. Another change that came with the new numbers includes the median age, which dropped from 52 to 36.
The Wrap reports 2 million viewers watched the rerun of the Scream Queens premiere shown on Thursday night. Scream Queens also beat Empire’s series premiere in 2014 in video on demand and streaming viewership, 1.816 million to 1.748 million.
Murphy said younger viewers see watching a show live as “uncool.” He added he asked the cast of Scream Queens how they watch TV.
“Not a single one between 18 and 28 even own a TV,” he said. “They want to watch how they want to watch when they want to watch it.”
Love our #ScreamQueens fans whenever they watch.
— Ryan Murphy (@MrRPMurphy) September 27, 2015
The Hollywood Reporter also reports Scream Queens improved 59 percent among adults 18-49 as reported by Nielsen Media in their first count of DVR views.
Fox Television Group chairmen and CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman released a statement in which they acknowledge the way TV shows are being viewed is changing and this means a show might actually be more popular than what initial numbers suggest.
“Scream Queens is a model for contemporary viewership. Today’s numbers clearly demonstrate that not only is the show being watched heavily across multiple platforms, but those viewers watch it with urgency and want to be part of the global conversation before the next episode airs.”
As Bustle points out, the fans of a TV show “are there, and they are watching, and they are engaged” but not necessarily in the traditional way. The site notes viewers could be watching the show on their laptops rather than on TV or are just simply busy at the time and want to watch the show later.
What does Ryan Murphy have planned for Scream Queens? Word is that Murphy has three Halloween-themed episodes, which according to Variety, have increased the number of viewers for Murphy’s other show, American Horror Story.
While ABC’s The Muppets beat out Scream Queens Tuesday night, the new numbers for Scream Queens give its cast and crew hope the show will enjoy a long life on Fox.
[Image via Twitter]