A&E has itself a winning recipe with its hit series Duck Dynasty, which consists of a heapin’ helpin’ of Southern style testosterone mixed with a similar amount of family, more than a dash of eccentricity, and just a pinch of business acumen. The result is cable television most-watched non-news program on Wednesday nights, with this week’s two half-hour episodes coming in with 3.63 million and 3.598 million viewers respectively! USA’s airing of NCIS and Discovery Channel’s Moonshiners were a distant second and third place with 3.098 and 3.063 million viewers.
The numbers have held steady after a ginormous back-to-back premiere on October 10, which had an average of 3.8 million viewers! Here’s the excited press release from A&E Networks the day after:
A&E’S ‘DUCK DYNASTY’ HUNTS DOWN RECORD AUDIENCES
3.8 MILLION VIEWERS FLOCK TO THE SECOND SEASON PREMIERE
BACK-TO-BACK PREMIERES MORE THAN DOUBLE THE SEASON ONE AVERAGE ACROSS ALL KEY DEMOS
NEW YORK, NY – October 11, 2012 - The second season of A&E’s newest hit series “Duck Dynasty” premiered last night to record breaking audiences of 3.8 million total viewers, 2.4 million adults 25-54 and 2.3 million adults 18-49, becoming the most-watched telecast in the series’ history.
Over back-to-back premieres at 10:00PM and 10:30PM, the season premiere posted increases of 111% among total viewers, 118% among adults 25-54 and 109% among adults 18-49 versus the season one average.
“Duck Dynasty” also grew from episode to episode. The 10PM premiere averaged 3.7 million total viewers, 2.3 million adults 25-54 and 2.2 million adults 18-49. The 10:30PM premiere episode grew to 3.9 million total viewers, 2.5 million adults 25-54 and 2.4 million adults 18-49.
Season one of “Duck Dynasty” was one of A&E’s fastest growing series; the season one finale of “Duck Dynasty” on May 23, 2012 drew 2.6 million total viewers and 1.5 million in both adults 25-54 and 18-49 demos, making it cable’s number one original show for the night.
“Duck Dynasty” is produced for A&E Networks by Gurney Productions. Executive producers for Gurney Productions are Deirdre Gurney and Scott Gurney. Executive producers for A&E are David McKillop, Elaine Frontain Bryant and Lily Neumeyer.
America’s hunger for Southern-style reality program seems to be ravenous as shows like Swamp People, Moonshiners, CMT’s biggest hit Bayou Billionaires, and even Here Comes Honey Boo Boo continue to garner HUGE ratings. (Though it didn’t bring in quite the numbers of Duck Dynasty or Swamp People, I’m a huge fan of the Dixiefied version of Deadliest Catch, Big Shrimpin’!) MTV is even reportedly launching a Jersey Shore-esque series based in West Virginia title Buckwild this December.
And let’s not forget that Southern reality shows can have lots of flavors, as evidenced by the success of such Atlanta-based series as The Real Housewives of Atlanta (the most-watched of the Housewives franchises), Love & Hip Hop Atlanta, and the upcoming Big Rich Atlanta on Style Network.
Could it be that Southern folks are just better at being “real?” You better redneckognize!!!
Congratulations to the Robertson family and to A&E, neither of which are strangers to success for a reason.
Duck Dynasty airs Wednesday nights at 10 and 10:30pm EST on A&E.