Sunday, May 19, 2024

HBO’s “The Gilded Age” Is Officially A Hit with 600K Viewers, Renewed for a Second Season


“The Gilded Age” is a hit.

On Monday night, Julian Fellowes’ “Downton America” soap opera drew 604,000 viewers. Every week has seen an increase since the costume drama debuted a month ago. That’s an 11% increase over last week, although the key demo dropped 16% (maybe because of the Olympics).

As a reward, HBO has renewed the show for a second season.

The fourth episode was a decided improvement over its predecessors, that’s for sure. The first couple of installments were very clunky in their set up. They also looked not cheap exactly but poorly made. “The Gilded Age” was intended at first for NBC, and looked like it.

But episode 4 seemed a little more sure footed and less glare-y. (They’ve got to work on the lighting.) The highlights are Christine Baranski, Cynthia Nixon, and Louise Jacobson, not to mention Morgan Spector. Baranski and Nixon almost seem like they’re in a different show, but that maybe because of their theater training.

There’s also a thrill seeing so many Broadway stars coming and going. You can’t get enough Audra McDonald. Michael Cerveris seems like he’s about to get a mystery storyline. Next week Nathan Lane makes an appearance. He’ll either chew all the chinoiserie in one bite or give us a good chuckle. It could go either way.

Best scene this week was with the two butlers from “old” and “new” money discussing the placement of table settings. A lot of times this show seems very “on the nose” but that one worked.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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