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Deutschland 83, a critically acclaimed new German TV series, continues to struggle with its home audience.
Around 2 million viewers tuned in for the second week of the show on leading German commercial channel RTL, a 6.7 percent market share. That’s below last week’s season premiere, which itself was below expectations for the much-hyped series.
Even among RTL’s core 14-49 demographic, the picture wasn’t great, with Deutschland 83 getting a 10.8 percent share.
The series, which follows an East German Stasi spy who infiltrates the West German military at the height of the Cold War, faced fierce head-to-head competition. On commercial net Pro7 The Voice of Germany drew 2.5 million viewers and took a 15.4 percent share of 14-49 year-old viewers. Older watchers tuned in to a holiday special on public broadcaster ARD featuring German pop star Helena Fischer, which drew 5.07 million viewers, or 16.7 percent of the overall market.
If ratings continue to slide, Deutschland 83‘s future could be in doubt. The series has been a critical hit in the U.S., where it premiered on Sundance TV, and has sold well worldwide, including to Channel 4 in the U.K. and to Hulu for SVOD rights. That international support could help Berlin-based producers UFA as they try to get a green light on a second season.
Deutschland 83, created by husband-and-wife team Anna and Jorg Winger, was originally planned with a three-season arc that would take the action up to 1989 and the fall of the Berlin Wall.
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