Review Bombing of The Acolyte Doesn’t Stop Impressive Disney+ Viewership

  • The Acolyte broke a viewership record on Disney+ with 4.8 million views on its first day, surpassing other popular Star Wars series.
  • Despite mixed reviews, the show’s strong start proves that the Star Wars franchise still commands a sizable audience on-screen.
  • Extreme reactions to The Acolyte may have boosted its viewership, making it the most-watched Disney+ series debut of the year.

The arrival of The Acolyte on Disney+ created an expected divide in opinions when it launched earlier this week. Despite the show being review bombed, the viewership of the series’ opening episodes has broken a 2024 record on the platform. Like many additions to the Star Wars franchise, fans quickly engaged with the available episodes, leading to a substantial opening day audience.

Set 100 years before the events of The Phantom Menace, critics have rated the show as one of the best in the space saga’s fluctuating fortunes. However, audience reviews on Rotten Tomatoes began low and quickly dropped as thousands shared their opinions. The show received complaints even before its official release, but viewership numbers were strong.

According to official data shared by Disney via Variety, The Acolyte scored 4.8 million views on its first day. For comparison, the Obi-Wan Kenobi series pulled in 11.2 million views in its first three days, while Ahsoka drew 14 million views across five days. With such an impressive first day, The Acolyte has the potential to surpass these volumes when all numbers are counted. Additionally, it became the most watched Disney+ series debut of the year, surpassing Marvel’s X-Men ’97, which reached 4 million views in five days.

Extreme Reactions to The Acolyte Could Have Boosted Its Viewership

The release of a new Star Wars or Marvel series on Disney+ usually draws a crowd, regardless of initial reviews. Even negative reviews often lead to curiosity, resulting in increased viewership. It becomes evident that a run of negative reviews can often boost rather than hinder the viewership of a series.

Whether this is true for The Acolyte is hard to tell, but there is clear interest in the series, which explores a previously uncharted era of the Star Wars universe. While many books and comics exist about the High Republic era, this series is the first screen adaptation of that timeline.

George Lucas sold Lucasfilm to Disney back in 2012 for $4.05 billion, leading to the Star Wars sequel trilogy and other titles.

The recent emphasis has been on the small screen with The Mandalorian and its spin-offs. However, the next few years will include several big movies as Lucasfilm looks to bring Star Wars back to cinemas. Plans include two Mandalorian movies, a sequel featuring Daisy Ridley as Rey Skywalker, and a Dawn of the Jedi movie directed by James Mangold that explores the distant past and sets up future projects.

The Acolyte may not have received the audience reaction expected by showrunner and director Leslye Headland, but it demonstrates that the Star Wars franchise still commands a significant audience, despite frequent complaints from vocal fans.

The Acolyte releases new episodes each Tuesday on Disney+.

Wrapping Up

The success of The Acolyte‘s debut underscores the enduring appeal of the franchise. For more updates and content, visit HitPlay.

This article may contain affiliate links, which means we may earn a commission if you purchase through these links.