Salem is a fantasy drama about witches in the eponymous puritan colony of Massachusetts in the 17th century. In this retelling of the true story, witches are real and they have control over great power. In fact, the #Salem Witch Trials is actually headed by head witch Mary Sibley masquerading as an innocent members of the townsfolk horrified by the supposed wickedness of the accused.
What viewers get with @Salem is a good mix of supernatural horror, fantasy, and drama. There is even a strong romantic subplot between Mary Sibley and old flame John Alden. Copious amounts of CGI effects grace the screen as fantastical beasts, demons, and the magical powers of the witches are put on display. All of this is wrapped up in the package of historical drama which always provides interesting visuals in the form of costumes and sets.
The show is like a comic book story with its powerful characters, magical powers, shoe-horned romances, and action-filled plots. It is no surprise that Comic Con was the first platform where the season three trailer was released. As such, it is far more popular with potential fans than the critics. Metacritic professionals give it a collective rating of 49 out of 100, noting that it is full of frightening scenes and a lot of magic-based action, but lacks much in the way of serious and believable drama.
The fans, on the other hand, are just pining for more of the same. #Salem currently holds a 7.2 and a 7.3 on Metacritic and IMDb, respectively, from users. 89% of users on Rotten Tomatoes say it’s a good watch. In terms of fan excitement, @Salem is holding its own among the giants of scripted fantasy programming.
One area in which it’s lackluster is in actually filling the pews, though. The show typically gets less than half a million viewers since the second season. Airing on small re-run channel WGN America might have something to do with it, but in looking at historical figures for the show, we find that it lost a lot of viewers along the way. The season premiere drew in a crowd of 1.5 million and devotees quickly tapered off from the initial push.
On the other hand, it is WGN’s first scripted series after several decades of running nothing but recycled material from other channels. This nostalgic loyalty is probably one of the main reasons it has lasted this long. The third season had the worst opening of the series at less than 300,000 viewers. The low number came even despite the fact that the season 3 opener was moved from its normal April release to an early November start to coincide with Halloween. The marketing ploy didn’t pay off.
This situation isn’t helped much by the fact that lead actress Janet Montgomery wasn’t in much of the first episode of this latest season. They also got rid of fan-favorite Xena (AKA Lucy Lawless). It looks like the writing is on the wall for Salem. This is a pity considering how much the fans like it, but such is show business.
Whether the show goes on to live a long and illustrious life or it’s cancelled, one this is for certain – we’ll have all the information you need to know about the future of Salem. Sign up for our email notification list down below to reveal pithy updates about certain official announcements. When information about season 4 is released, we’ll let you know.
What do you think of Salem as of season 3? Do you want Countess Ingrid to come back in some way? Do you prefer the Dark Lord or the Countess as the main villain? Do you think the show should feature vampires and other mythical beasts? Give us your comments and opinions down below.