Aug 23, 2019
By Nicole Bitette
Many fans of the family drama are based in areas of the country where cowboys still roam.
Paramount Network’s Yellowstone is the most-watched cable series on TV for a second straight summer, an honor that’s due in large part to audiences in middle America.
The drama—about a Montana ranch owner, played by Kevin Costner, and his family—is the centerpiece of Paramount Network’s strategy to create TV as exciting as movies. Yellowstone is a perfect representation of the brand’s desire to produce premium content where setting plays as important a role as the characters. The series’ setting is integral to its character development—a pattern that continues in Paramount Network's forthcoming scripted series, whether it’s the U.S./Mexico border for Coyote, a forward operating base in Afghanistan in 68 Whiskey, small-town Mississippi of Paradise Lost, or the criminal underworld of London during the vibrant and volatile 1990s in its Sexy Beast prequel.
“Their stories are compelling without being too dystopian or too cerebral,” says Keith Cox, president of development and production for Paramount Network and TV Land. “We want to develop shows that have the broad appeal of broadcast shows, but with the tone of cable,” says Cox. “We want to speak to a lot of different people, but we want to surprise them in the storytelling.”
Now in its second season, Yellowstone reaches an average of five million people per episode, topping ratings from the first season and growing viewership nearly every week since its June premiere, according to Paramount Network Research. While the series performs well coast to coast, it's most successful in cities throughout the Midwest and the South.