Pilot episode of ‘Atlanta,’ Donald Glover’s new FX series, is free to stream


Former Commumity star Donald Glover wants his new show to shed light on the nuances of Atlanta, Georgia, and FX is promoting it by giving a few samples away for free. Following the  series premiere of Glover’s new FX show Atlanta on Wednesday, the pilot episode was made available to stream for free on Facebook and YouTube.

FX premiered the first two episodes of Atlanta, a show centered on Glover’s Earnest “Earn” Marks attempts at managing the burgeoning rap career of his cousin, Alfred “Paper Boi” Miles, while navigating through the madness of a culturally rich city like Atlanta. By Thursday, the pilot episode has racked up more than 350,000 views on YouTube. More than one million viewers checked out the new show on its official Facebook page the day after its debut on FX.

The two episode premiere attracted more than 2 million viewers, with the pilot episode drawing 1.1 million viewers and the following episode attracting 960,000 viewers. The show was also a hit on Twitter, with more than 167,000 tweets sent out about the first two episodes on its premiere night.

Glover’s Atlanta is the first show FX has released a full episode of on YouTube since its first upload in January 2014. While FX may have made the pilot episode free to stream, the following episode is not, unless you go through FX. Both episodes are free to stream on FX’s official website and FX Now app without a cable subscription as part of FX’s Preview Pass. The Preview Pass only gives you an hour of free streaming, but with both episodes clocking in under an hour combined, that Preview Pass is the most inexpensive way to catch up on the first two episodes of Atlanta.

FX is following in the footsteps of cable rival HBO by releasing a full episode on YouTube. Whereas Atlanta‘s pilot episode is the first full episode FX has made available on YouTube for free in more than two years, Vice News has made numerous full episodes of its HBO series Vice on HBO free to stream on YouTube since the series debuted in 2014.

FX’s parent company 20th Century Fox signed a multiyear agreement with Hulu in late 2014 to make it the default subscription video on demand (SVOD) destination for numerous FX shows. But, with FX’s biggest 2016 hit, The People v. O. J. Simpson: American Crime Storystreaming on Netflix in 2017 instead of Hulu, Atlanta’s SVOD fate is still a bit uncertain.

Atlanta airs every Tuesday on FX at 10 p.m. ET.

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