The Ken Burns/Lynn Novick documentary premiere also garners more than 2 million streams across PBS Digital Platforms, making it the highest-streamed series premiere in PBS history.
PBS today announced that the premiere episode of The Vietnam War, the 10-part, 18-hour documentary film series from Ken Burns and Lynn Novick that aired on Sunday, Sept. 17, drew an average audience of 9.6 million viewers (people 2+) across PBS stations nationwide (6.0 household rating).
A total of 11.9 million unique viewers watched the premiere in all (Nielsen, National Live +7). The first episode has been streamed over two million times to date, making it the most-streamed series premiere in PBS history.
The premiere episode of The Vietnam War is PBS’ highest-rated telecast of the Nielsen 2016-17 broadcast season and the best performing since the series finale of Downton Abbey On Masterpiece in March 2016. The 6.0 rating for The Vietnam War is more than 300% greater than PBS’s average primetime rating.
The premiere episode also ranks among the highest-rated episodes of all time for a Ken Burns/Lynn Novick series, rising above groundbreaking titles including Prohibition (2011), The War (2007) and Jazz (2001).
The Vietnam War is currently re-airing on Tuesday nights at 9 p.m. ET (Oct. 3-Nov. 28) and is available for streaming on pbs.org and all station-branded platforms, including Passport, a PBS station benefit for donors.
To date, all 10 episodes of the series have been streamed more than 7.2 million times, with 3.3 million of the streams delivered via PBS’ over-the-top (OTT) apps. In addition to a Spanish-language version of the series, in a first, PBS also offered a Vietnamese subtitled version of the series for streaming. In another first, the series also streamed in Vietnam, attracting over 600,000 streams to date.