BY STEPHANIE TOPACIO LONG
USA Network had a big summer, and much of it is thanks to the success of Mr. Robot, the network’s new drama-thriller series. Across platforms, the critically acclaimed show was sampled 17.44 million times, according to Comcast.
Looking at summer viewership in key demos — P18-34, P18-49, and P25-54 — Comcast reports that USA Network led all basic cable networks. Mr. Robot averaged 2.8 million viewers in the P2+ category, with an average of 1.4 million viewers ages 18-49 and 1.5 million ages 25-54. The cybersecurity-focused show ranks second among the summer’s new cable series and third among the year’s scripted basic cable drama series in key demos.
Mr. Robot‘s video on demand performance has been particularly impressive. The series was first made available on multiple online and VOD services with an early premiere of the pilot on May 27, ahead of its USA Network debut on June 24. The pilot was sampled by 2.6 million people, prompting the network to order a second season before the first had even aired.
So far, Mr. Robot has racked up 9.3 million VOD transactions and is one of the top five most downloaded series on iTunes. The show was July’s top performing basic cable series across Comcast on demand platforms. It has also been streamed more times (6.4 million to date) on USANetwork.com than any other new USA series in the past five years. To top it off, the breakout show also has the highest engagement rate of any first season USA original on the site.
The series has an interesting and current premise that clearly has appealed to viewers. It follows Elliot Alderson, a security engineer at a cybersecurity company, who suffers from anxiety and depression. He’s also a skilled hacker and something of a cyber-vigilante, which leads him to be recruited by “Mr. Robot,” an anarchist who leads a team of hacktivists.