‘Breakout Kings’ opens strong for A&E

Drama sets record in pair of key demos

A&E’s newest drama, “Breakout Kings,” opened to a solid 2.8 million viewers Sunday night and set records in a pair of key demos.

Skein, about a team of U.S. marshals who team with escaped convicts to help track down prison escapees, premiered at 10 p.m., followed by a repeat telecast nearly an hour later. Show drew 1.5 million viewers in the 18-49 demo, 1.6 million in 25-54.

Both were bests for the net, topping the 1.3 million viewers in 18-49 set by “The Glades” and “The Cleaner.” “The Glades,” which debuted last summer, was also previously tops in 25-54 with 1.5 million.

The 18-49 demo number bested the recent debut of USA’s “Fairly Legal” (1.4 million) — significant since USA is basic cable’s top net in the demo and total viewers for the last five years.

Matt Olmstead and Nick Santora — the duo behind Fox’s former drama “Prison Break” — are exec producers with Peter Chernin and Katherine Pope. Show, from Twentieth Century Fox, stars Laz Alonso, Domenick Lombardozzi and Malcolm Goodwin.

Also Sunday night, Lifetime drew 4.2 million viewers for the fifth season premiere of “Army Wives,” up 27% from its season four debut. Seg was also the second best basic cable debut in the 18-49 women demo (1.4 million).

Femme-skewing net’s new reality series “Coming Home” — about military personnel returning to the U.S. after overseas duty — drew 2.6 million following “Army Wives.”

E! debuted new scripted half-hour “After Lately.” Behind-the-scenes look at latenight talker “Chelsea Lately,” which aired at 11 p.m., got off to a sluggish start with 1.2 million viewers — down significantly from the 1.7 million who tuned in at 10:30 p.m. to see “Holly’s World.”