Could Outlander become a breakout hit for Starz? The premium cable network’s buzzy new fantasy drama, based on Diana Gabaldon’s bestselling novel series, has been viewed nearly 1 million times in the run up to its official Saturday night premiere.

Starz put the first episode (“Sassenach”) of its adaptation online and On Demand this week. So far, the hour has been viewed 897,372 times by more than 600,000 unique viewers. (So, yes, some fans are apparently watching more than once.) Those numbers include viewing via Starz On Demand,, YouTube, and Xfinity. Reviewers have been largely positive, including EW’s own Jeff Jensen. Yet it’s tough to say at this point what the sampling will mean for the show’s official premiere and beyond.

Outlander follows a WWII combat nurse (Caitriona Balfe) who is is mysteriously transported back to 1743 Scotland, where she is kidnapped by a group of Highlanders. If you haven’t already, check out the NSFW pilot below:

Outlander (Music)
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