Wednesday, March 10, 2010

First Two Weeks, Parenthood

Parenthood (NBC)

Sampling: The premiere of Parenthood was somewhat widely considered a disappointment due to the Olympics promotion. Still, at a 3.1 demo, it trails the Southland premiere (which had its own promotional advantage, with significant promotion during the widely-viewed ER finale as that show's spiritual successor) by just a tick and is slightly ahead of the My Own Worst Enemy premiere from fall of '08, which had a much larger lead-in. The Biggest Loser pulled just a 3.2 demo, so the lead-in retention was sound. And it's significantly ahead of this season's only two other NBC drama premieres, Trauma and Mercy. It is a pretty inconclusive start.

Retention: A week later, with lead-in The Biggest Loser down two ticks from 3.2 to 3.0, Parenthood drops five ticks from 3.1 to 2.6. This is a 16% drop, something that Marc at PIFeedback called a very typical drop, and looking at the list of week two retentions below, that's the truth. Right smack in the middle of all shows.

Prognosis: "Borderline" is the system's diagnosis, and that sounds just about right. A lackluster but far from awful premiere, and a lackluster but far from awful week 2 make it a highly average - and thus hard to predict - situation. It's not easy, but I'm saying it gets a season 2. It's on NBC, where the standards are lower to begin with, and the net is going to have to fill a lot of real estate in the fall with Leno gone. And the critics for the most part don't completely hate it. For an NBC show, those modest achievements are often enough. As a bigger-picture ratings person, I'd say this one needs more data, but within the bounds of this system, I'm leaning renewal.

The Vampire Diaries 6.3*
V 5.2
The Cleveland Show 4.9
NCIS: LA 4.4
Cougar Town 4.4
Modern Family 4.2
Flashforward 4.0
Melrose Place 3.9*

Community 3.8
Life Unexpected 3.6*
Glee 3.5
Accidentally on Purpose 3.3
The Good Wife 3.1
Parenthood 3.1
Eastwick 3.0
Human Target 2.9
Past Life 2.8

The Middle 2.6
The Forgotten 2.6
Mercy 2.3
Trauma 2.2
Hank 2.1
Three Rivers 1.9
The Deep End 1.8
The Beautiful Life: TBL 1.8*
Brothers 1.0

*-Although A18-49 isn't necessarily the "CW demo," in an attempt to put them on a level playing field with the big 4, I've taken the A18-49 premiere number for the CW shows and multiplied it by 3.

The Good Wife +3%
The Deep End even
Accidentally on Purpose -6%
Flashforward -8%
Glee -9%
Mercy -9%
Modern Family -10%

The Cleveland Show -10%
Three Rivers -11%
Cougar Town -14%
The Vampire Diaries -16%
Parenthood -16%
Human Target -17%
The Beautiful Life: TBL -18%
The Middle -19%
Brothers - 20%

Trauma -23%
Eastwick -23%
The Forgotten -23%
Life Unexpected -24%
Hank -24%
V -27%
Community -29%
Melrose Place -31%
Past Life -50%

EXCELLENT (6 points) - NCIS: Los Angeles, Flashforward, Modern Family
GOOD ENOUGH (5 points) - The Vampire Diaries, Cougar Town, Accidentally on Purpose, Glee, The Cleveland Show, The Good Wife
BORDERLINE (4 points) - V, Mercy, The Deep End, Melrose Place, Human Target, Parenthood
IN TROUBLE (2-3 points) - Community, TBL:TBL, Eastwick, Three Rivers, Brothers, Life Unexpected, The Middle, Past Life (3 points), The Forgotten, Trauma, Hank (2 points)

Shows already renewed for 2010-11 are greened, shows already axed are redded, the new show this entry is in blue. If this is your first of these First Two Weeks post, click the "new shows" label and head down to the bottom for more on the method behind this madness.

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