FX TV rides back into the black with “Sons of Anarchy” follow-up.
The statistics are baffling. Sons of Anarchy sequel Mayans MC is the most popular new cable-television show in 2018. According to Business Insider the pilot episode was watched by, “2.8 million adults 25-54, 2.5 million adults 18-49, and 1 million adults 18-34,” which adds up to an astounding (and somewhat confounding) 6.8 million viewers across linear (at the time) and non-linear (later) platforms. The popularity of this new incarnation of the SOA has even exceeded the record set by “The People vs O.J. Simpson” in 2016.
So what's the draw?
Well, for starters, nothing is quite as attractive as current controversy. Despite being panned by the critics (What do they know anyway?) this biker gang drama, set on the California/Mexico border, is apparently the perfect complement to post-Trump America—drug-running Mexicans with gobs of guns and loud pipes helping their criminal counterparts on the other side of the border.
Equally interesting is that a portion of this ratings success includes an almost 100 percent bump from the Hispanic audience. Normally, about 10 percent of this demographic tunes in to English-language scripted TV series, but this premiere attracted 19 percent. Turns out, people are more likely to watch a show that speaks their language. Wait, I meant, is in their language.
The other 80 percent of viewers, though? Sons of Anarchy reminded networks that Americans love to watch bad bikers being bad. Evidently, the mystique loves on. Despite the highly-visible growth of the café-racer crowd, hipster builders, chill cruiser crews, women's clubs, charity and cultural events organized and attended by motorcycle riders of every race and religion, it seems that there are still millions of TV watchers who prefer the one percent. Well, prefer watching them at any rate. Best the rest of us not take it personally.
So pop the corn, grab a beverage, and "go all in" for a gut-punching evening of brawling and brapping that proves that cable TV is still in the game.