Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Ratings Five-Spot, WE 12/19/10 - Pawn Stars, Hell's Kitchen, Psych/Burn Notice/Leverage, Larry King Live, Perfect Couples

Here's your Ratings Five-Spot for the week ending December 19, 2010:

Pawn Stars - You don't see a ton of series highs as things slow down in mid-December except for the odd fall finale, but I've gotta give a nod to one of my favorite reality shows, which tied a series high with a whooping 2.5 demo last Monday and hit a series high in total viewers with 6.38 million. That put the History show ahead of everything on the cable top 25 last week not named Monday Night Football. This show can really score at any time of the year; its other 2.5 demos came on 3/8/10 and 7/5/10.

Hell's Kitchen - There were a couple other reality show finales last week, but I've covered most of those in the War of 18-49 update posts (including one upcoming for Survivor later today), so I'll look at the one that I didn't. Hell's Kitchen ended a fairly subpar season for the show with a 2.6 demo on Wednesday, up three ticks from the penultimate episode but still way behind the 3.0+ numbers the show was doing early in the season. I guess a month-long baseball hiatus can't be a good thing for a serialized reality show.

USA/TNT Double-Ups - Three cable hits aired back-to-back originals last week in USA's Psych and Burn Notice and TNT's Leverage. Though Leverage did grow in total viewers from its series-worst ratings of the Christmas episode from the week before, the winner of the bunch was Burn Notice, whose 1.6 demo overall got the show close to where it was average-wise during the summer. The 1.0 demo for the two Psych episodes was about on par with the majority of that show's winter run.

Larry King Live - There was not a long period of growth in anticipation of the end of Larry King's CNN show; in fact, much of the final week for the 25-year talker was actually down from the previous week's ratings. But there was a big spike for the finale, up to 2.24 million total viewers and a 0.4 A25-54 rating. This was well over twice what he'd normally been doing lately, and he actually won his timeslot among cable news shows in total viewers, a true rarity for CNN these days.

Perfect Couples - A triple dose of Perfect Couples in the Five-Spots this week...! The comedy was basically DOA, scoring a mere 1.3 demo in its sneak preview after the finale of The Sing-Off. The real test will be how it does a month from now in its Thursday timeslot, but it's certainly not even remotely a good sign for that run. It didn't get a lot of help from the fact that The Sing-Off finale was way down week-to-week, but that doesn't excuse the fact that it still only retained about half of that demo audience.

More Five-Spots in the Index.

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