Only 2.9 million people turned in to watch the series finale of HBO’s Succession. By any sane standard, that’s a flop—a massive flop, a humiliating flop.
You don’t know Succession is a flop if you’re on Twitter or reading entertainment publications. If you’re exposed to either, you would think the Succession finale was equal to the Beatles appearing on Ed Sullivan (45 million), the final episode of Roots (51 million), the “Who Shot J.R.?” episode of Dallas (53 million), the series finale of M*A*S*H (60 million), the series finale of Seinfeld (76 million), or the series finale of HBO’s Game of Thrones (19.3 million).
Gee, you might even think the Succession finale grabbed more viewers than an average episode of Jeopardy (6.5 million) or NCIS (6.7 million), or Good Morning America (3.02 million).
Only 2.9 million.
And yet, we get this…
I don’t have anything against Succession. And yes, streaming will definitely increase that 2.9 million over time. But still, can we all calm down?
Hey, I even watched the first few seasons of Succession. It was…fine. Yes, we’re a long, long way from the Golden Era of The Sopranos, The Wire, Mad Men, Lost, and Breaking Bad. But Succession was…fine. I certainly didn’t enjoy it enough to pay HBO to watch the final season. Because all it was was…fine. If someone were to hand me the complete series on Blu-ray for free, I might watch the final season. Actually, I wouldn’t. Fine, even for free, isn’t good enough.
So while I have nothing against the show itself, I do resent the gaslighting.
A show that attracts 2.9 million viewers, especially for its much-celebrated finale, is a stunning failure, a total flop. If Succession drew 2.9 million viewers on broadcast T.V., it would be canceled.
I hate to break this to you, but 2.9 million is less than one percent of the American population.
All the hoopla around Succession tells you is that the corporate media and entertainment rags produce content only for themselves. These outlets are only about serving the top one percent among their fellow elites. Serving the public has zero to do with the media anymore. Instead, it’s all about status, proving you are part of the club, and proving their fealty to the club by latching blindly on to The Next New Thing—Fauci! Ukraine! Drag Queens! Succession!
But that’s the current state of the entertainment and legacy media today. The idea of serving the general public is over. Instead, we are marginalized and gaslighted into feeling like we’re being left out of a T.V. show less than one percent of the country watches. Keep in mind that 2.9 million was for the series finale. Regular episodes of Succession attracted around only two million viewers.
HBOMax (now just Max) has about 50 million U.S. subscribers. This means not even ten percent of those tuned in.
That’s a flop.
Over the long weekend, here’s what I watched:
- Enemies, A Love Story (1989)
- I Never Sang for My Father (1970)
- Deathtrap (1981)
- Abandon Ship! (1957)
- Nightmare Alley (1947)
- The Razor’s Edge (1945)
- Dark of the Sun (1968)
- Slaughter (1972)
- Black Caesar (1973)
- Hell Up in Harlem (1973)
- The Pledge (2001)
Do you care what I watched over the long weekend?
And that’s my point.
Watch: Succession series finale trailer
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.
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