Mad Men Drops 50% of Audience In Two Hours

If publicity determined ratings, then all the other channels may as well just not have bothered last night. Every media outlet from here to House & Hound has Don Draper’s mug on their front cover.

Yet while the overnights for last night’s Mad Men series five premiere on Sky Atlantic may not look like great reading for Sky execs, they may reflect well on the monumental publicity drive.

with nearly 100,000 tuning in at 9pm, the channel achieved 300% above the slot average for Sky Atlantic. The drama averaged 72,000 viewers over the two-hours of it’s opening double-episode ‘A Little Kiss’, but lost half it’s audience in that time. Episode one attracted 98,000 (0.4%) and episode two managing 45,000 (0.3%). In contrast, the season four premiere took 360k on BBC2 in 2011.

Sky bosses will argue that this still represents a success, in light of the Beeb’s figures last year. Yet they will have been disappointed that a flagship show didn’t return and retain better results and the figures show that many are still determined not to pay extra for their favourite content, preferring to wait for the box-set release.

So why did people tune in and not stay with it? We think that might have something to do with Mad Men newbies, attracted by the hype, watching it for the first time and deciding they didn’t like it (?!?!) before switching off..

Read our review of A Little Kiss..