It’s always risky to take a show off-air in the middle of the season — even if it is just for one week.
Fox is taking that chance with its event series “Wayward Pines,” which just gave viewers tons of answers to the show’s mysteries on Episode 5 last week and then took this week off from airing.
The network and executive producer M. Knight Shyamalan are hoping that the break in action will actually increase the show’s audience next week based on strong social media interaction and word of mouth.
“For me,” Shyamalan said on a press call on Friday, “to some extent, the way we structured even the airing of the episodes so that there was a break right here after Episode 5 was with the hope that at this point — we didn’t know whether we would have a fan base that would talk and spend time and try to tell everybody — the strategic intent was to give it a little break after this, as we get to the last five, to get everybody to get caught up.”
The “Sixth Sense” director said he understands why viewers may want to wait before jumping on to a new show.
“I’m a lazy viewer so you need to tell me 20 times that ‘Game of Thrones’ is great before I watch it,” he said. “It’s literally like that, and then I watch it, or ‘Breaking Bad’ and then I watch it. I’m like, ‘I’m not going to watch it unless I know it’s great.’ I’m hoping that the fans that have been growing, that they can tell a lot of people.”
There’s some reason to believe that the plan will work. “Wayward Pines” has seen good increases in delayed viewing. The audience for last Thursday’s pivotal episode grew 67% over three days in the advertiser-coveted adults, aged 18-49-year-old audience, according to Nielsen Ratings.
It also ranks as summer’s No. 1-rated entertainment program, which doesn’t include sports programs.
Viewers can watch the first five episodes of the season on On Demand, Fox On Demand or on Hulu.
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