Issue 178,  published September 25, 2018

Serial’s Strong Debut Numbers

Serial returned with its highly-anticipated third season last Thursday, and what a return it was: each of the first two episodes of Serial’s latest season brought in over 1.4 million global unique downloads within the first fourteen hours of publication. I wrote about the numbers for Vulture, but here are the specific counts: the first episode, “A Bar Fight Walks Into the Justice Center,” saw around 1.46 million unique first-day downloads, according to Podtrac numbers provided to Vulture. The second episode, “You’ve Got Some Gauls,” brought in around 1.43 million unique first-day downloads.

In comparison, the first episode of the second season garnered around 1.34 million unique downloads on its first day, which means that Serial’s third season scored the podcast’s biggest debut yet. (Wanna know something crazy? The very first episode of Serial only brought in 86,000 downloads on day one. Wild.) Anyway, those numbers are verified by Podtrac, which switched over to GMT cutoff times earlier this year — hence the fourteen hour time-frame.