'Hatfields & McCoys' Set Record For Viewership

The History Channel is thrilled to see the viewer response to the release of their new show "Hatfields & McCoys" a tale of familial honor, revenge, and the cost of hate. The story has been well ingrained in American folklore, even being featured in an animated Disney short in 1946, and speaks to viewer experiences of the conflicts between duty, and restraint.

View attachment 1734 The programming drew in record setting numbers of viewers with its initial airing, urging broadcasters to give them more of the show. Later in the week the premier was re-aired with a similar viewer response. The show dramatizes the lives of the member of the two families as the two struggled with each other for almost a half of a century, over a hundred years ago. It also tells a classic Romeo and Juliet story, when children of the two families see past the blinding hate of their forebearers.

Hatfields & McCoys tells the story of the long-standing feud between the two family lineages of the Hatfields and McCoys, that began as a part of the American Civil War (1861-1865). The feud started when a member of the Hatfield clan murdered Asa Harmon McCoy, fuelled by hatred that Harmon had joined and served in the Union Army. Both families were from the West Virginia area, which, while taken under Union control very early on in the war, was an area of continued unrest, beset by raids from the Confederate Army. Upon Anse Hatfield's return from his army post, due to injury, he was hunted down and killed. In a long series of retaliations, even going so far as to include the help of neighbours, over a dozen people were killed, and another dozen injured over the course of the escalation.

The show premiered on May 28, and quickly rose to being the foremost watched non-sports programming on cable television. The program stars the famous faces of Kevin Costner and Bill Paxton. Representatives of the A&E Television Network say that between the two showings, over 17 million people were watching.