There is nothing messy about the ratings for Dirty John's premiere. The new Bravo anthology kicked off last Sunday (November 25), and it cleaned up. With its debut, Dirty John easily set the new ratings record for Bravo's most-watched scripted series.
After counting three days of delayed viewing, Dirty John swept up the competition -- bringing in 2.09 million viewers with its premiere, per THR. That number puts it well ahead of the former record-holder, Girlfriends' Guide to Divorce. For comparison, that Bravo series garnered 1.48 million with its debut in 2014.
When replays from USA, E!, and Oxygen are combined, Dirty John's total viewership amounts to 3.8 million. That is an impressive number. Clearly, anticipation was intense for the podcast adaptation of the same name. When you consider the popularity of the true crime podcast, it comes as little surprise. The television series comes a little over a year after the podcast premiered in October 2017.
The series Dirty John stars Connie Britton as Debra, a divorcée and mom to three adult kids -- a son and two daughters. The daughters are played by Juno Temple and Ozark's breakout star Julia Garner. When Dirty John begins, Debra is looking for true love via a dating site. She thinks she has found it when she meets John Meehan.
Played by Eric Bana, John claims to be a doctor and the answer to all of Debra's dreams. The problem is that Debra's grown daughters have an entirely different impression of him. They smell a rat. The psychological battle between John and Debra's daughters starts to escalate in the first episode, while a flash-forward when Dirty John begins hints at the life-and-death struggle ahead.
With its second episode, Dirty John will have to prove it has the staying power to keep its debut viewership. Traditionally speaking, shows tend to see a slight dip after viewers have gotten a taste of what they have seen. Whether word-of-mouth buzz will prove powerful enough to propel Dirty John to another spectacular week of ratings success will be interesting to follow.
The next episode airs Sunday, and it will focus on the aftermath of Debra and John's Las Vegas wedding. They got married at the end of Episode 1. While the newlyweds bask in having taken the next step in their relationship in Episode 2, Debra's daughters and nephew start making plans to unmask the real John.