Disney is making one of its best shows of the year more accessible. On Monday, the company announced it would begin airing Andor on ABC, FX, Freeform and Hulu. Starting November 23rd, the expansion will allow those without access to Disney+ to watch the first two episodes of the Tony Gilroy project. That’s just enough to get a sense of Andor’s smart writing, immaculate production and obsession with institutions, but without seeing the conclusion of its initial arc.
The announcement comes after the show arguably had its best episode yet. Anchored by a stellar performance by Stellan Skarsgard, “One Way Out” featured a thrilling prison break and was a neat encapsulation of Andor’s many strengths. It also comes amid questions about just how many people are watching the show.
In October, Parrot Analytics data analyst Brandon Katz shared a graphic that suggested it was lagging behind other live-action Star Wars shows. Katz later retracted his findings, noting he had incorrectly inputted the relevant data. “It’s performing much better than the initial tweet showed,” he said. “It has hit exceptional demand in several instances.”
Even with the retraction, the discourse around Andor has centered around the show’s viewership numbers. Disney’s decision to air the show on more platforms would seem to lend weight to suggestions the show has been less popular than The Mandalorian and Obi-Wan Kenobi.