HBO’s ‘The Idol’ Debuts to 913,000 Viewers

The drama’s premiere viewership was on par with the openers for “Euphoria” and “The White Lotus”

Abel "The Weeknd" Tesfaye and Lily-Rose Depp embrace in "The Idol." (HBO)

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Sam Levinson’s newest HBO drama “The Idol” debuted to 913,000 viewers on its Sunday evening premiere across Max and linear HBO telecasts, figures on par with the premiere viewership for “Euphoria” and “The White Lotus,” according to Nielsen and first party data.

As “Euphoria” fans and newcomers alike tuned into the series premiere that has been shrouded in chatter about its scandalizing nudity and sexual content, the series premiere drew in comparable numbers to the series premieres for recent HBO dramas, exceeding the premiere viewership for “Winning Time,” which scored 901,000 viewers during its March 6, 2022 debut.

“The Idol” premiere viewership was just shy of the 944,000 viewers brought in by Season 1 premiere of “The White Lotus” in July 2021 as well as the 1.1 million viewers drawn in by the series premiere of the Levinson-created “Euphoria” in June 2019.

The premiere episode will likely experience more growth, however, as the average “Winning Time” Season 1 premiere night audience grew to 1.2 million viewers and the average “The White Lotus” Season 1 premiere viewership was boosted to 1.1 million viewers.

Sunday’s premiere marks a significant drop off from last week’s “Succession” series finale, which brought in 2.9 million viewers across platforms and marked another series viewership high for the drama, which debuted its fourth and final season to 2.3 million viewers in March 2023.

The Season 1 finale of Levinson’s “Euphoria” nabbed 1.2 million viewers — just slightly above its premiere viewership — while the Season 2 premiere drew 2.4 million same-day viewers and Season 2 finale brought in 6.6 million viewers in Feb. 2022.

Co-created and co-executive produced by Levinson, Abel “The Weeknd” Tesfaye and Reza Fahim, “The Idol” centers on the comeback journey of pop star Jocelyn (Lily-Rose Depp), who attempts to cement her status as the nation’s top star after a nervous breakdown derailed her last tour. As Jocelyn leans on her managers and creative team to redirect her image amid numerous scandals, she crosses paths with nightclub owner Tedros (Tesfaye), who leads her down a path of corruption as he encourages her to loosen up.

In addition to Depp and Tesfaye, the series features Dan Levy, Jennie Ruby Jane, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, Jane Adams, Moses Sumney, Troye Sivan, Rachel Sennott and Hari Nef, among others.

“The Idol” Episode 1 is now streaming on Max.