Christina Ricci Didn't Expect Yellowjackets' First Season To Be Such A Hit

When "Yellowjackets" first premiered, it seemed poised to become another casualty of the post-streaming television landscape. We're talking about shows that debut to little fanfare because of the sheer number of other shows now airing concurrently via streaming platforms. However, the show slowly but surely developed a strong following through social media word of mouth. I know I've certainly convinced many people to watch the show by posting about its various twists and turns on Twitter. By the time its season finale rolled around, "Yellowjackets" became the next television hit, and it has already been renewed for two more seasons.

It's fair to say that the success of "Yellowjackets" was pretty damn unexpected to fans. However, according to Christina Ricci, its popularity was especially unexpected to those working on the show.

"We all thought the show was really good," she said in an interview with Inverse. "We kept saying, 'I think it's really good, guys.' But I don't think any of us thought that in its first season, it would be as big a hit as it is."

Proof that audiences still want weekly programming

Ricci added:

"I thought the show would build more gradually. I don't know enough about TV to be able to really analyze it, but I don't think any of us expected it to be such a huge hit first season."

There are a lot of factors as to why "Yellowjackets" ended up being as successful as it is. Its central story is extremely compelling – who wouldn't want to watch something about cannibal cults and teenage angst? It also had a strong cast of both veteran actors and exciting newcomers, and most critically, it wasn't released all at one time.

This is an important thing to understanding what made "Yellowjackets" so appealing. The way that the show is structured makes binging it a significantly less enjoyable experience than watching it over the course of a few weeks. The show unravels its various mysteries in a way that makes the viewers want to sit and really think about each reveal they throw your way. That's ultimately a storytelling art that's been lost in the binge-centric television climate, one that arguably values quantity over quality.

However, it's an art that the "Yellowjackets" writing team has proven is still extremely valuable. Audiences want to be kept on their toes and to discuss the latest twists, turns, and shocking moments of their favorite television programs with each other. They want that communal activity of sitting in front of their TVs on a specific day and time to watch something. These experiences simply can't be replicated in the current streaming market, and that combined with the genuine craft exhibited in "Yellowjackets" makes its runaway success make total sense.

"Yellowjackets" returns to airwaves via Showtime on March 26.