Seemingly healthy people are slipping into comas. They fall asleep… and they don’t wake up. Do you wanna watch that? Nah, America didn’t want to either. A&E’s miniseries ‘Coma,’ the retelling of the 1978 hit, drew an audience of only 1.8 million viewers for its first episode. Considering how many of those viewers would be tuning in due to the 1978 series or just to check out a new series, fears are that number could dwindle even further by episode two.
An obvious explanation would be to point the finger at the holiday weekend to explain ‘Coma’s lackluster debut, however A&E specifically targeted this weekend in hopes of gathering viewers relaxing with an extra day off of work. We can’t blame the genre of medical miniseries either, as A&E’s last foray into the emergency room produced ‘Andromeda Strain,’ which delivered nearly four times as many viewers for its first episode.
The miniseries comes to a close tonight, ending the most recent telling of Robin Cook’s classic tale. There was no shortage of name recognition amongst ‘Coma’s cast, which includes Ellen Burstyn (‘Requiem for a Dream’), Geena Davis (‘Stuart Little’) and James Woods (‘Videodrome’). Reviews of the episode were middling, so it is doubtful that this number will spike any higher this evening.
But then… who will find out the secret behind why people are falling asleep and not waking---okay, I’m too bored by the premise to finish that sentence.