Although some fans on Twitter were bummed that Shark Week 2013 kicked off with a Mermaids-style “mockumentary” called Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives, its premise nonetheless was enough to get them and many others tuned in. Discovery Channel reports today that Shark Week 2013 broke all viewership records in the programming event’s 26-year history last night, Aug. 4.
Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives was, according to Discovery, the highest-rated and most-watched Shark Week program to date, earning a 2.60 P25-54 and 4.8 million total viewers in P2+ delivery. Over this same period in 2012, Megalodon was up 141% in the Persons 25-54 demo.
Last night, Discovery also debuted its first late-night talk show, related to Shark Week 2013, called Shark After Dark Live, hosted by comedian Josh Wolf. Discovery reports that Shark After Dark also did well in the ratings, up 62% in the P25-54 demo versus the same time last year and drawing in 2.1 million viewers.
On the social media side, Shark Week 2013 has already been a success, as well, with people buzzing about everything from whether the events depicted in Megalodon actually happened, to trying to figure out if the “marine biologist” featured in the special, Dr. Collin Drake, was any more of an actual marine biologist than George Costanza was.
According to Discovery, citing SocialGuide, Megalodon was the No. 1 most social show across broadcast and cable on Sunday, even besting the NFL Hall of Fame Game on NBC, and MTV’s premiere of Justin Bieber: Never Say Never. Shark Week conversation on Twitter grew 66% year over year in primetime, and late-night was responsible for nearly one million tweets for the day. #Megalodon, and #SharkAfterDark all trended worldwide on Twitter, and #SharkWeek and #AirJaws trended in the United States. Discovery’s SharkWeek.com site gained 6.3 million pageviews over the past three weeks, with more than 1.5 million yesterday alone (up 53% from 2012).
Shark Week 2013 continues with new (presumably real) specials each night this week.