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Discovery's 'Shark Week' kicks off to record ratings

August 05, 2013|By Patrick Kevin Day
  • You want sharks? Discovery's "Shark Week" has 'em.
You want sharks? Discovery's "Shark Week" has 'em. (Discovery Channel )

Discovery Channel's 26th edition of "Shark Week" kicked off Sunday night with the highest ratings in the history of the annual shark-related programming week.

The Sunday night airing of "Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives," grabbed 4.8 million viewers, making it the single most-watched "Shark Week" episode to date. The premiere episode of "Shark After Dark," the channel's "Talking Dead"-style shark-related talk show grabbed a respectable 2.1 million viewers.

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Discovery has boosted its programming for this year's edition, with 11 new shark specials, up from eight the previous year. The "Shark After Dark" program is another new addition.

Ratings for "Megalodon" were up 141% in the 25-54 demographic versus the same time period during last year's "Shark Week."

Just like "Sharknado" on Syfy earlier this summer, "Shark Week" is already a social media phenomenon, with two "Shark Week" programs, "Megalodon" and "Air Jaws: Countdown to Shark Week" among the most talked-about programs on Twitter.

Overall on Sunday, "Shark Week" was the topic of nearly a million tweets. That's a lot of shark talk.

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