FX's "American Horror Story" returned Wednesday with the franchise's largest ever audience, surging about 40% above its opener a year ago.
According to Nielsen, "American Horror Story: Coven" averaged a 3.0 rating/9 share in adults 18-49 and 5.54 million viewers overall -- gains vs. last year's "Asylum" premiere of 39% in the demo and 44% in total viewers. In 18-49, it easily beat competing broadcast dramas "CSI," "Nashville" and "Ironside."
ABC's "Modern Family" (3.8) fared better.
Counting two quickie repeats of its premiere (at 11:12 p.m. and then 1:25 a.m.), "Coven" collected 7.78 million total viewers.
FX said Wednesday's telecast could emerge as the most-watched program in network history when Live+7 DVR data becomes available.
"AHS" premiered in October 2011 with a 1.6 rating in adults 18-49 and 3.18 million viewers overall, and then returned a year ago to a series-best 2.2 demo rating and 3.85 million total viewers. "Asylum," closed with a 1.3 and 2.29 million in January of this year.
Jessica Lange, Kathy Bates and Angela Bassett are among the cast for this season of "American Horror Story."
'American Horror Story: Coven' Draws Record Audience
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