‘Twin Peaks’ Posts Soft Linear Ratings, Drives Record Showtime Streaming Sign-Ups

Twin Peaks
Courtesy of Showtime

The long-awaited return of “Twin Peaks” may not have been a ratings breakout during its Sunday premiere, but the show will most likely see the lion’s share of its viewership in delayed viewing.

According to Nielsen data, the two-hour premiere averaged 506,000 viewers in its initial airing and a 0.2 rating in adults 18-49 in live-plus-same day viewing. That is of course a fraction of the 34 million viewers the initial series debut pulled in back in 1990, but that was also before the rise of cable, let alone streaming.


Kyle MacLachlan in a still from Twin Peaks. Photo: Suzanne Tenner/SHOWTIME

TV Review: David Lynch’s ‘Twin Peaks: The Return’

Showtime won’t be sweating those numbers, however. The premium cabler announced that Sunday was the single biggest sign up day for their Showtime streaming service ever. The show also generated 4.7 million total impressions on Twitter, trending both in the United States and worldwide and ranking number one in prime time among all series.  In addition, the show has already averaged 1.1 million viewers, when counting repeat airings, streaming, and on-demand viewing.

Immediately following the premiere, Showtime offered subscribers access to the third and fourth parts across the streaming service and on-demand. Those two hours will then air back-to-back on May 28, followed by single parts in subsequent weeks.

The revival hails from original creators David Lynch and Mark Frost with Lynch directing all 18 hours. The limited event series picks up 25 years after the people of Twin Peaks were stunned when their homecoming queen Laura Palmer was shockingly murdered.

Along with the familiar faces, the new “Twin Peaks” will feature a lengthy list of new cast members. Last year, Showtime revealed the whopping 217 actors who would appear in the series, including Naomi Watts, Amanda Seyfried, Laura Dern, Monica Bellucci, Jim Belushi, Ashley Judd, and more.

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  1. Jan says:

    I think the era of Nielsen ratings and TV is coming to an end. “Ratings” today mean far less because of that. Focus on the computer-based media instead, this is where the future lies (for a foreseeable future :-) ) Nielsen and its implications are 20th century. Leave it there.

  2. Havn’t quite finished the first part of the new TV show Twin Peak (have it on pause while my wife takes the dog out) and am amazed why I didn’t watch it back in 91. This show to this point which has 20 minute to go has been shocking horrifying had a couple laugbs and at least 4 or 5 hideous murders. Can’t wait to finish this episode and dive head first into part two. If part 2 gives us a breather it will be the firzt since part 1 began. Oh ya did I mention the alien?

  3. Sensible Enough says:

    It was brilliant, best thing on the screen in decades — better than the original by far. Frost and Lynch better get a new two series deal or Showtime has rocks in their head, they can sell this for decades.

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