OWN is doubling the episode order of its first original scripted series, Tyler Perry’s “The Haves and the Have Nots.”
The low-budget soapy drama premiered on May 28 to the highest ratings of any series premiere in OWN history, and has been averaging 1.5 million viewers in the weeks since. Those are solid numbers by the standards of the previously struggling network, owned by Oprah Winfrey.
The current 16 episode run of “Haves” ends September 3, but OWN has ordered an additional 16 episodes to premiere in early 2014. The additional episodes are considered part of Season 1, bringing the season’s overall episode count to 32.
With the production values of a daytime drama, and performances straight out of late night pay cable, “Haves” has not been a hit with critics. But OWN’s press release touts the show’s status as the #1 non-sports program on Tuesday nights among all African-American women.
“Naturally, it is wonderful to have the network’s first scripted series score so resoundingly,” OWN president Sheri Salata said in a statement. “Tyler’s fans and OWN viewers have responded to this guilty pleasure in record numbers, and we are happy to give them more of a good thing.”