4:51pm PT by Michael O'Connell
'Westworld' Premiere Rises to 6 Million Viewers as HBO Boosts Sampling
The series opener of Westworld has now reached 6 million HBO subscribers.
That tally, which combines HBO Go, HBO Now, on-demand and various network plays, is up 82 percent from premiere weekend to more than 6 million viewers. HBO took a different approach with the second episode, making it available on streaming and VOD platforms over the weekend, for a combined 2.7 million viewers. Though the sampling does come with a linear dip in Sunday's network plays, it is pretty steady with the prior week.
Sunday was not an easy night for any TV outlet not airing the debate or the NFL. Perhaps that's why HBO is taking several different approaches with its fall launches. Sunday also marked premieres of Sarah Jessica Parker's network return, Divorce, and Issa Rae vehicle Insecure — each of which was made available early.
Rae's comedy has been available on HBO platforms for the last two weeks, where it's pulled more than 600,000 viewers. With Sunday's linear plays, the premiere is up to 1.1 million viewers ahead of any extended plays.
As for Divorce, the dramedy was not made available as early but 1 million viewers tuned in between linear and multiplatform plays over the weekend.
HBO is banking on Westworld continuing to gain viewers over the course of its freshman season, much like The Night Of did over its summer run.