Thursday, March 31, 2011

Spotted Ratings, Wednesday 3/30/11: Ain't No Sunshine

  •  Another sleepy Wednesday with most shows slightly down week-to-week. The most notable by far was Mr. Sunshine, which still arguably had some shot at a renewal coming into today but dipped four-tenths below any previous airing. (And down 33% from last week's episode after a Modern Family original.) That's not good.
  • Survivor hit an outright series low again rose in finals but tied a series low. The only program to rise from its last episode was Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior, up a tick, but that was mostly because it didn't have the original Minds lead-in this week.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Spotted Ratings, Tuesday 3/29/11: Nice Body!

  • ABC brought its spring lineup to the table for the first time on this Tuesday, with the Tuesday premiere of Dancing with the Stars hitting its highest spring Tuesday premiere numbers since 2007. (Another great start for the franchise this season, but the lack of American Idol on the night should significantly help the Tuesday numbers too.)
  • The series premiere of Body of Proof did pretty well. It was easily ABC's second-most impressive scripted premiere this season, trailing only No Ordinary Family's 3.2 back in October. Though it did drop a chunk from its DWTS lead-in, it's not nearly the dive taken by the Detroit 1-8-7 premiere this fall (it lost 48%) or even, perhaps more encouragingly, the Castle series premiere in 2009 (which dropped 51% from DWTS). It even edged the Castle premiere (3.0) in raw numbers.
  • Most shows didn't make big moves despite the increase in competition, but I will mention the 10% drop for The Good Wife against similarly female-led Body of Proof since it led to a new outright series low.

    Tuesday, March 29, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Monday 3/28/11: Dancing To Victory

    • There may be adjustments in finals, but as of right now, Dancing with the Stars (5.1) and Castle (3.3) both beat their combined broadcast competition. (Castle would get a 51 if not for the adjustment for the 10:00 hour.) Credit the only other two legit nets on the evening (CBS and Fox) being in repeats, but still an impressive week-to-week retention for those two programs.
    • The arrival of Dancing has something to do with it, but I feel I should mention that the lack of original Two and a Half Men is taking a toll. The regularly-scheduled Two and a Half Men repeats have been getting weaker and weaker since the show's original finale on February 14. This string of repeats got as high as a 3.3 back on February 28, around the height of the Sheen drama, but last night's managed just a 2.3 - down 30% in a month and its weakest repeat all season. The net's other comedy repeats were also well below average.

    Monday, March 28, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Sunday 3/27/11

    • Just like on Thursday, almost all original programming was up from its last original. The biggest movers were 60 Minutes, which benefited from the huge NCAA lead-in (which caused a 17-minute CBS overrun and threw things off a bit), and American Dad!, which moved from 7:30 to higher-viewing and higher-lead-in 9:30 for a week.   
    • Probably the most significant rating was week four of Secret Millionaire, which picked up two ticks and has ABC breathing a sigh of relief following its double-digit drops in weeks two and three. Looks to be in good shape now.

    Scheduling Five-Spot, WE 3/27/11 - NBC Summer, The Paul Reiser Show, Fringe, ABC Summer, Southland/Lights Out

    Here's your Scheduling Five-Spot for the week ending March 27, 2011:

    NBC Summer - NBC will have originals (or almost-originals) on five different nights this summer. Monday's got the return of Law & Order: LA bleeding into June, Tuesday and Wednesday have America's Got Talent, Friday has Dateline and the second window of Friday Night Lights, and Sunday will have season two of The Marriage Ref. The net still hasn't set the whole summer sked, as they seem to be waiting on other announcements before slating reality newbies Still Standing, Love in the Wild and It's Worth What? Look for at least one of those to get scheduled around Got Talent.

    Sunday, March 27, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Saturday 3/26/11: No Ordinary Saturday

    • The first half or so of primetime was ruled by the tail end of the UConn/Arizona basketball game (3.1, but heavily subject to finals adjustment), which preliminarily about equaled its combined broadcast competition.
    • It doesn't matter for the show, but it's another example of the "Friday/Saturday effect" to put in our pockets. A Saturday edition of doomed No Ordinary Family (1.0) was down around 30% from the show's recent Tuesday episodes.

    Saturday, March 26, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Friday 3/25/11: 'Shark' Tanks

    • The big rating of interest on this evening (at least to me!) was the Friday premiere of Shark Tank (1.2). That 1.2 leading off the evening does not look good for a premiere, as it's down a stout 37% from its Sunday "preview" five days prior. It's also 19% below its average in its four Friday episodes all the way back in the opening weeks of 2010. It is ahead of Supernanny's average in the hour, so all hope is not lost, especially since the show actually grew from its timeslot premiere number in all three season 1 timeslots it had. It may need to do that again.
    • Fringe ratings matter less now with the show recently renewed for season 4, but the 1.4 demo was up week-to-week. (Came down in finals to reduce those gains, though.) I don't buy into the idea that early renewals can (or are designed to) provide a short-term ratings boost, but I guess this'd be a piece of evidence in that theory's favor. Might be an idea worth looking at sometime!
    • In unscripted news, it was Fox's Kitchen Nightmares and the rest of ABC's lineup below average while Who Do You Think You Are? and Dateline on NBC were both at season-second-best levels.
    • CBS had basketball again, and again we saw the effect of just one other network airing March Madness (compared to three last week). The Kentucky/Ohio State classic in the second game was by far the highest-rated game of the tourney to date.

    Friday, March 25, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Thursday 3/24/11: The Rise of Everything

    • Not too often we get to say this, but all ten original entertainment programs in primetime were up from their last originals. That still left most of them below average for the season, as most were rallying from terrible numbers posted on HUT-depressed St. Patrick's Day. The biggest movers were Private Practice, Parks & Recreation, 30 Rock and, oddly, recently-axed Perfect Couples. The big movers certainly benefited from the increased HUT (after finals, I estimate around a 9% increase in overall 18-49 viewing week-to-week) and the presence of original Grey's Anatomy and The Office on the evening. Those weren't around last week.
    • The two CBS bball games were much higher than last week's first round games and also much less down year-to-year, as predicted in yesterday's Five-Spot. The 7:00 game was down 32% and the second game down 23% year-to-year.

    Thursday, March 24, 2011

    Ratings Five-Spot, WE 3/20/11 - March Madness Ratings In-Depth

    It wasn't a hugely interesting ratings week, so I decided to dedicate this whole Five-Spot to a more in-depth look at the first week of March Madness. I think it's worth the effort because this year has had such a drastic shift in the way the tourney is covered, and it's pretty tough to find all this info consolidated in one place anyway.

    First Four on TruTV - Despite considerable joking in the sports media about how nobody would be able to "find" TruTV, three of the First Four games on Tuesday and Wednesday did outdraw the Tuesday play-in game on ESPN last year. Even the first 16-vs.-16 matchup (1.200 million) edged last year's play-in (1.053). And the at-large matchups (1.354 million for Clemson/UAB on Tuesday, 1.253 for USC/VCU on Wednesday) did much better than the 16-vs-16s. UTSA/Alabama St. early on Wednesday brought up the rear with just 786,000 total viewers.

    Spotted Ratings, Wednesday 3/23/11

    • Credit CBS and ABC with this much: we've certainly gotten to see how new shows Mr. Sunshine and Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior perform in a variety of situations. A week after getting a 2.5 in the "best" situation (original Minds lead-in, repeat Law & Order: SVU competition), Suspect Behavior declined double-digits when given the "worst" situation. (The Minds repeat lead-in was above average but so was the original SVU competition.)  
    • Sunshine got to air after an original Modern Family after two straight weeks with repeat lead-ins. While it predictably bounced back, its 52% drop from Modern was its worst yet and worse than anything Cougar Town's ever done in the timeslot.
    • The Middle is taking a hit from the constant Idol competition. A week after it had its weakest repeats of the season, an original hit a new season low. Same with Survivor, which actually tied a series low.

    Wednesday, March 23, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Tuesday 3/22/11

    • After a couple weeks of Fox originals steamrolling the competition with CBS in repeats, the tables turned this time. NCIS (3.8) led the evening but all of the CBS shows were slightly below-average and close to flat despite facing much less competition than the last time they aired originals (when Fox had American Idol and ABC had the Charlie Sheen 20/20 back on 3/1/11).
    • Slow day, so I'll just observe that The Biggest Loser (3.0) seems more hurt by Glee than by similarly-rated NCIS. It hit its highest ratings since February.

    Tuesday, March 22, 2011

    War of 18-49 Update, Supernanny (2010-11)

    Let's take a look at the 2010-11 season (the show's seventh and final overall) of Supernanny on ABC.

    2010-11 adults 18-49 low/average/high: 0.9/1.09/1.3

    Rating the Ratings: There's not that much to say about the last season of Supernanny. It basically did what the previous season had done, which was fill in a lot of Friday hours that otherwise probably would've been lower-rated or wasted with something stronger. (What would Secret Millionaire have premiered with if it'd aired on Friday at 8/7c as originally scheduled?) It did drop another 12% from the 2009-10 run, but that's probably not very meaningful, as the show was ending regardless. As with the previous season, the ratings are a pale shadow of what they once were for this program, but the show did the job ABC gave it. Now it's over. Grade: C.

    Here's the now-updated War of 18-49 post for Supernanny.

    Spotted Ratings, Monday 3/21/11: The Impenetrable Castle

    • The big story was the triumphant return of Dancing with the Stars, which garnered 43% of the 18-49 eyeballs in its two-hour slot (a slightly higher bcShr than last week's Bachelor finale despite facing CBS original competition). The 5.3 number is the show's weakest winter/spring premiere number since 2006, and it's down 17% from last spring's premiere, but it is slightly ahead of the fall 2010 premiere.
    • The DWTS premiere helped boost Castle to a season high. It's the third-highest number in series history, trailing just the two-parter that followed last spring's DWTS premiere, and it's way ahead of the show's ~2.5 average this season. It also got a rare win over Hawaii Five-0.
    • For most other stuff, it was tough going in the face of the big ABC competition, with CBS originals How I Met Your Mother and Mike & Molly dropping double-digits from their last originals to outright season lows. Chuck and Harry's Law also hit outright series lows. Fox bubble drama The Chicago Code dropped in finals and joins the outright series low gang, but it wasn't a big drop for its first airing against Dancing.

    Opinion Five-Spot, WE 3/20/11 - V, Survivor, March Madness, Shark Tank, Pretty Little Liars

    Here's my Opinion Five-Spot for the week ending March 20, 2011:

    V - I made it through all of season two of V (after bailing early in season one and returning during the New Year's Day marathon) but I was still never really convinced the show was that good. The finale, while very meaningful to the show, didn't really convince me either. But I'm more interested in seeing the complete reinvention of the show that the finale promised than I would be in more of what has come. And as I remarked on the Twitter, if they had to kill off a bunch of characters (budgetary reasons?) they certainly picked the right, most useless ones.

    Monday, March 21, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Sunday 3/20/11: Back to Reality

    • Out of 12.5 original hours on the big 4 on Sunday, nine were unscripted. Week three of Secret Millionaire and America's Next Great Restaurant, both already down double-digits in week two, took further double-digit dips. The latter failed to capitalize on the 1.6 for a rerun that it garnered on Tuesday. Secret Millionaire is still in pretty decent shape at this level, Restaurant not so much.
    • In premiere world, Shark Tank kicked off season 2 with a series high, a tick ahead of the 1.8 it posted a few times all the way back in summer 2009. It dropped 24% from lead-in Secret Millionaire, which was easily the largest lead-in the show's ever had. The 1.9 was exactly what I predicted and not really a big deal either way. The upcoming Friday results will make or break the show.
    • The last 90 minutes of Fox were new and relatively impressive. Bob's Burgers (2.2) was on par with recent results despite airing in originals after a Simpsons repeat (2.0) for the first time. (Then again, The Simpsons is one of TV's best-repeating shows, so it wasn't a huge dip in lead-in.) Family Guy (3.4) and The Cleveland Show (2.7) both hit tied their highest numbers since January.
    • CBS' The Amazing Race hit a season high, while CSI: Miami posted its second straight pretty solid result in what has been an impressive March rally that has probably helped the show (if it was in any danger to begin with).

    Scheduling Five-Spot, WE 3/20/11 - Fox Summer, The Bachelor, Being Human, NBC Comedies, ANTM

    Here's your Scheduling Five-Spot for the week ending March 20, 2011:

    Fox Summer Schedule - This was about as "meh" of a summer schedule as you could possibly ask for, as Fox will offer up zero new shows and zero scripted originals during the summer months. So the pundits have turned to reading repeat tea leaves; among the four fairly similarly-rated bubble dramas on the net, only Lie to Me and The Chicago Code have scheduled summer repeats. Personally, I don't make a lot of it, as Fox schedules are always in pencil and those are the two that would intuitively repeat the best. Also, Traffic Light repeats are scheduled, and that sure ain't returning.

    Sunday, March 20, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Saturday 3/19/11

    • I may have something to say about the NCAA games when finals come out; it's a preliminary 1.4 average from 8:00 to 10:00 for now. None of the other programs distinguished themselves, with Cops (1.3/1.5), America's Most Wanted (1.5) and 48 Hours Mystery (1.1) all around 10% below average thanks perhaps to increased competition from the NCAA tourney.
    Full table forthcoming next week.

    Saturday, March 19, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Friday 3/18/11: The Fringe Cringe

    • Haven't talked Fringe since I started doing these since it's been steady at (what was in my opinion a very bubbly) 1.5. But last night's episode took another couple brutal steps downward to a new outright series low, and I think it's in big trouble now.
    • It's been quite an impressive seven-year run, but Supernanny closed with a whimper, up a tick from last week but slightly below its soft 1.1 average this season. More on that in a War of 18-49 update next week. (Now posted HERE.)
    • The two NCAA games ended up down 55% and 48% year-to-year respectively. As yesterday, I'll note that's because the games are spread out across four networks for the first time this year.
    • TVBTN's into reporting the Daylight Saving viewing level thing now, so since my estimates are so rough, I'll just report their numbers: -10% at 8:00, -5% at 9:00, -4% at 10:00 week-to-week.

    Friday, March 18, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Thursday 3/17/11: March Badness

    • A brutal day on broadcast as six of nine originals on the evening hit outright season lows while another tied a season low. Most of those were also series lows. Adults 18-49 viewing took a 7% hit according to ABC thanks to the Daylight saving/St. Patrick's Day double-whammy. Among the particularly ugly results were just-renewed Parks & Recreation and 30 Rock, which were hurt by the repeat Office lead-in, and Private Practice, which also lost its big lead-in but has held up much better in one-off 9:00 attempts in the past.
    • The only original that really did anything admirable was Bones, which posted its third-best number of the season and its best post-Idol retention of the season. The number is pretty solid considering Idol was way down.
    • After finals, the two CBS March Madness games were down a seemingly ugly 53% and 59% from last year's Thursday pair. As mentioned on the Twitter yesterday, the credit should go almost entirely to the new arrangement with the three Turner networks spreading out the ratings. The tourney was up year-to-year overall, but that's not reflected at all just by looking at CBS' performance.

    Thursday, March 17, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Wednesday 3/16/11

    • Another pretty boring day as the listings and ratings were mostly similar to last week's. Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior (2.5) was up 14% week-to-week but posted (after finals, almost) the same number as it got two weeks ago when it last had the same circumstances (original Minds lead-in and SVU repeat for competition).
    • American Idol dropped to a Wednesday season low but still beat its combined broadcast competition with a 54 broadcast share (down from last week's 58).
    • America's Next Top Model plunged 18% week-to-week to a new outright tie a series low.
    • Among the shows in repeats, the only notable was The Middle which had its worst two repeats of the season to date.

    Wednesday, March 16, 2011

    War of 18-49 Update, The Bachelor (Winter 2011)

    Let's take a look at the winter 2011 season (the show's fifteenth overall) of The Bachelor on ABC.

    Winter 2011 adults 18-49 low/average/high: 2.7/3.26/4.7

    Rating the Ratings: It's been a highly improbable resurgence for this franchise over the last three years or so, but the return of Brad Womack finally exposed a chink in the armor. It didn't look so bad at the beginning (the premiere was down 12% year-to-year) and the end (the finale was down 15% and After the Final Rose down 11%) but things got pretty bleak at times in the middle. Overall, the season was down 20% and easily the show's weakest since its winter 2009 resurgence. That said, the 3.26 average still has it well ahead of where it was in spring 2008 when it seemed to be teetering on cancellation, and it's quite a comfortable number in the grand ABC scheme. The show's not going anywhere for now, but this downturn may be something to keep an eye on long-term. Grade: C.

    Here's the now updated War of 18-49 post for The Bachelor/Bachelorette.

    Spotted Ratings, Tuesday 3/15/11

    • Daylight Saving drove viewing slightly down at 8:00 (TVBTN says 6%). The only noticeably-hit show was Glee, which dropped 13% and tied a season low despite going to Regionals and using original songs for the first time. Glee grew two ticks in finals but still finished down 9% from its last original. The biggest drop (after finals) belonged to Raising Hope, now down a half point from last week's 2.7. All Fox shows were down double digits from their averages to date.
    • The (possible series) finale of V gained two ticks week-to-week at 9:00. Probably doesn't make much of a difference for renewal prospects, but better than the 1.8 it was in the prelims.
    • The only other notable was a surprisingly OK demo for the repeat of America's Next Great Restaurant after The Biggest Loser, actually tying the premiere's first-run number nine days prior and much better than last week's Parenthood rerun (1.2). We'll see if it makes any difference on Sunday.

    Ratings Five-Spot, WE 3/13/11 - The Event, Mad Love, Harry's Law, Mr. Sunshine, Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior

    Opinion Fiver taking a week off (maybe more) since most of my TV watching this time of year is basketball. I'll try to get enough thoughts together to have one next week. Since it was not a big week of premieres, I'll take a look at how a selection of new shows are doing. The most interesting new show not included is The Chicago Code, but I wanna wait and see how it does once Dancing with the Stars enters the mix; hard to say either way right now. Here's your Ratings Five-Spot for the week ending March 13, 2011:

    The Event - This is how it works sometimes; after I spent a lot time on a post suggesting that long in-season hiatuses usually aren't the death blow, The Event proceeded to drop 26% in its two-hour return from a 14-week hiatus. The resulting 1.4 demo was already easy cancellation territory, but then it lost another two ticks this week and has now shed exactly two-thirds of its stout premiere audience. It's already in The Cape territory now, and it looks like Harry's Law must continue to march on without a good lead-in.

    Tuesday, March 15, 2011

    Another Week, Another SRs Tweak

    I've mentioned in the "What? and Why? of Spotted Ratings" post that a problem with a couple of the stats in the daily tables is that they don't work well for 10:00 shows since there are only three networks for which we get national ratings in that hour. The "broadcast share" is taking a piece of a much smaller pie, while the "competition" is comparing against fewer networks (can't take into account news/other local stuff on Fox/CW).

    Till I come up with something better, these are simple enough fixes for 10:00 shows (or the 10:00 portions of shows that air partially in that hour):

    Competition - 10:00 shows currently face two networks where the other shows face 3.5. So multiply two-network competition times a 3.5 / 2 constant to get the equivalent of facing 3.5 networks.

    bcShr - 10:00 shows are currently one among three networks (1 / 3) where others are one among 4.5. So multiply by a 3.0 / 4.5 constant to get the equivalent of being one of 4.5 networks (1 / 4.5).

    It's still not exactly a "level playing field," but it should be closer. Worth noting is that counting the CW as even a "half network" is a bit of a stretch; a "half network" in a 4.5-network world would get one-ninth of the broadcast ratings, or about an 11 bcShr, but most shows on that net finish in the single digits. But we'll go with this for now.

    Changes apply starting with the next tables I post and will be noted in the key. Thanks for reading!

    Spotted Ratings, Monday 3/14/11: The Most Dramatic Ratings Domination Ever

    • It was a surprisingly healthy first Monday after Daylight Saving, with viewing level estimates about even at 8:00 and slightly up at 9:00 and 10:00 on a week-to-week basis. (And there's no viewing level note in the ABC press release today, so that probably lines up with my estimates.) All CBS/NBC/Fox shows did drop (though Harry's Law and the 5-0 repeat rose in finals to avoid this), but none more than 15%.
    • They can probably owe at least some of those drops to great showings by The Bachelor (4.5) and The Bachelor: After The Final Rose (4.7), both of which were way way ahead of any other Bachelor airing this season and more healthy on a year-to-year basis (-15% for the finale, -11% for ATFR) than the season in general. The finale grabbed 41% of the broadcast eyeballs from 8-10:00 while ATFR got 57% at 10:00. (Note: the ATFR number changes due to a tweak in the bcShr calculation for 10:00 shows.)
    • The only potential renewal game-changers were another 13% drop for Mad Love (2.1) and perhaps further downticks for Chuck (1.6) and The Chicago Code (1.9).

    Monday, March 14, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Sunday 3/13/11: Daylight Saving Come and Me Wan' Leave Home

    • As I continue to note, my viewing level estimators are not very accurate, but it appears there was a tangible Daylight Saving effect at 8:00, where I estimated about 38% A18-49 viewing at 8:00 last Sunday and estimate about 34% this week. That estimated four percentage point (or ~10%) drop in viewing likely contributed to the week-to-week drops of all 8:00 programs: Secret Millionaire (-18%), The Amazing Race (-4%), America's Next Great Restaurant (-13%), The Simpsons (-11%) and Bob's Burgers (-9%). Also at 7:00, America's Funniest Home Videos (-6%) and Dateline (-21%) took hits.
      • EDIT: Per Zedman2 in the comments, the actual drop across the whole night as noted in an ABC press release was just 6% (36.6% -> 34.5%). That was almost certainly higher in the first two hours than in the last two, so my figures above are probably pretty close to accurate.
      • Second EDIT: Thanks to a couple 8:00 shows going up in the finals, my 8:00 A18-49 using TV estimation rose to 35.2%, down 7% week-to-week.
    • The last two hours of primetime also seemed a bit down viewing-level wise, but not significantly. With some of the heavy-hitters in those two hours in repeats, the big winner was CSI: Miami, which tied its second-biggest number of the season and hit its highest demo since October. The Cleveland Show was another somewhat surprising riser, up two ticks from last week despite Family Guy going into repeats.

    Scheduling Five-Spot, WE 3/13/11 - Two and a Half Men, Law & Order: LA, Survivor, TNT Dates, Terra Nova

    Just missing this week's Sked Five-Spot: Three NBC comedies (Community, The Office, Parks & Recreation) get one-hour finales in May, while ABC fills the late-season Tuesday 8/7c void with reality sophomore Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution. Here's your Scheduling Five-Spot for the week ending March 13, 2011:

    Warner Bros. Fires Charlie Sheen - What does Warner's firing of Charlie Sheen mean for Two and a Half Men? To me, it suggests they'll most likely make a run at doing the show without him. Lots of potential replacements have been floated. Since I'm not a viewer (though I'd check out the early post-Sheen eps probably) I'm just as interested in scheduling implications, and my gut says CBS sticks with Men in its Monday 9/8c anchor spot and continues establishing comedy Thursday with The Big Bang Theory.

    Sunday, March 13, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Saturday 3/12/11

    • Nothing, really, but I guess I'll note that ABC's Rascal Flatts special did much worse than either of the repeats (Wipeout and Secret Millionaire) that sandwiched it. Fox dominated the evening with about average episodes of Cops and America's Most Wanted.
    Note: CBS' programs are treated as if they aired in their scheduled timeslots, but on the East Coast there was a 39-minute overrun for the Pac-10 basketball championship. Will work on overruns more if I'm still doing this come football season, but for now that's how it works.

    A18-49 Share Last Lead LeLa Comp CoLa bcShr Avg Rank
    Winter Wipeout (oR) 0.9 3 n/a n/a n/a 3.1 n/a 23 n/a n/a
    Rascal Flatts: Nothing Like This 0.6 2 n/a -33% n/a 3.3 n/a 15 n/a 1/1
    Secret Millionaire (oR) 0.9 3 n/a 50% n/a 3.9 n/a 20 n/a n/a

    NCIS (oR) 0.8 3 n/a n/a n/a 3.2 n/a 20 n/a n/a
    NCIS: Los Angeles (oR) 0.9 3 n/a 13% n/a 3.0 n/a 23 n/a n/a
    48 Hours Mystery 1.1 4 10% 22% -36% 3.5 -5% 24 -10% 16/22

    Harry's Law (oR) 0.7 2 n/a n/a n/a 3.3 n/a 18 n/a n/a
    Law & Order: Los Angeles (oR) 0.7 2 n/a 0% n/a 3.2 n/a 18 n/a n/a
    Law & Order: SVU (oR) 1.1 4 n/a 57% n/a 3.5 n/a 24 n/a n/a

    Cops 8:00 1.5 6 -12% n/a n/a 2.4 -20% 38 2% 8/18
    Cops 8:30 1.7 6 -6% 13% -12% 2.4 -20% 41 4% 7/18
    America's Most Wanted 1.7 6 -11% 0% -6% 2.2 -29% 44 3% 6/18

    Slot Min HUT Calc HUT Max HUT
    8-9pm 26.0 28.6 30.0
    9-10pm 26.0 30.0 31.8
    10-11pm 24.3 28.2 32.9
    8-10pm 26.0 29.3 30.9

    KEY (much more detail at What? and Why? page)

    A18-49 - Percentage of US TV-owning adults 18-49 watching the program.
    Share - Percentage of US TV-watching adults 18-49 watching the program.
    Last - Percent difference from previous episode.
    Lead - Percent difference from lead-in program.
    LeLa - Percent difference between lead-in and previous episode's lead-in.
    Comp - Total rating of other broadcast programs in the same timeslot. 10:00 programming multiplied by 1.75 to attempt a level playing field.
    CoLa - Percent difference between competition and previous episode's competition.
    bcShr - Percentage of US national big-5 broadcast TV-watching adults 18-49 watching the program. 10:00 programming multiplied by two-thirds to attempt a level playing field.
    Avg - Percent difference from show's previous demo average this season.
    Rank - Rank among show's episodes to date this season.

    Min HUT/Max HUT - Smallest/largest percentage of TV-owning adults 18-49 that could be watching any TV in the timeslot.
    Calc HUT - Estimate of the percentage of TV-owning adults 18-49 watching any TV in the timeslot. Formerly "HUT."

    (R) = Regular-night repeat. These are ranked/averaged as if they were separate shows.
    (oR) = Other-night repeat. These are not ranked/averaged in any way.

    Stats in blue are less accurate due to lack of access to half-hour breakdowns.

    Source: Sitcoms Online

    More Saturday Spotted Ratings.

    Saturday, March 12, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Friday 3/11/11

    • Local preemptions for basketball matter, leaving a lot of the night's preliminary numbers a little shakier than usual. It appears CBS had an optimistic night as CSI: NY would tie a season high and The Defenders would head out with two straight 1.5s that would leave the CBS schedulers with a little something more to think about than it appeared they'd have when The Defenders and first joined the evening. (I still think it gets axed, but this has made it a bit more interesting.) 
      • As I noted on Friday, they were shaky. The Defenders tumbled two ticks in the finals to a 1.3 and sees what might have been a somewhat intriguing late-game rally wiped off the board. (It now loses 13% week-to-week and, from where I'm sitting, is surely not going to get a renewal.)
    • ABC's lineup rallied significantly from last week's disastrous numbers, with all three  two shows up 20%+ week-to-week. (Supernanny tumbled in the finals, eliminating its uptick altogether.) And NBC's Who Do You Think You Are? is already renewed but it took a big hit and moved into pretty ugly territory.

    Friday, March 11, 2011

    The What? and Why? of Spotted Ratings

    Recently I created a spreadsheet that spits out quite a bit of info just using the daily broadcast adults 18-49 ratings and shares. I'm hoping all this data will eventually allow me to do some pretty in-depth studies of how TV ratings work. For now, the biggest benefit is that I can do a pretty informative daily ratings post. I'm gonna talk a bit here about what I think the practical meanings are for all the numbers in the daily tables, and I'll be linking to this post alongside all the daily ratings tables going forward.

    Spotted Ratings, Thursday 3/10/11

    • Not much of significance happened. American Idol was 18% down from last week to a Thursday low this season, but that's largely a function of more competition and, perhaps more importantly, the fact that it was just one hour this week vs. two last week. The only other big movers were Rules of Engagement, up four-tenths thanks to the original Big Bang lead-in, and CSI, up three-tenths to its highest number since January. Among the three nets in repeats, the standout was Winter Wipeout (1.8 for two hours).

    Thursday, March 10, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Wednesday 3/9/11: Repeat Lead-ins Bury New Shows

    Note: I've spent some serious time with my spreadsheet today and added some additional info. "CoLa," which is basically "change in competition," joins. I've given "HUT" its own table just to illuminate how big the margin of error on these estimates can be at times. Maybe some day I'll be a heavyweight and be able to get viewing level info sent to me, but for now all I can provide are these estimates. Tomorrow I'm going to finally do the big post that explains more about what the numbers are and when/why I think they're useful and start linking each daily post to that post (so I can significantly shrink the "KEY" below).

    • The two new shows with typically huge lead-ins took a big hit without 'em. Mr. Sunshine dropped more than 20% out of a Modern Family repeat while Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior lost 15% week-to-week after a Criminal Minds repeat. And the weak Sunshine helped drive Off the Map down another 18% to a 1.4. All three hit outright series lows.
    • American Idol dominated the mostly-repeat field, drawing 58% of the broadcast 18-49 eyeballs in its timeslot (up from ~50% last week). Most repeats were below average
    • CW's Top Model rallied; it's back at its (still shaky) week one levels. (Shedding for the Wedding dropped in finals, eliminating its rally.)

    A True Ratings Rat Race: Tuesdays 10/9c

    Timeslot rankings aren't usually aren't very interesting to me. That's partly because they're not that important and it's partly because there aren't too many timeslots on TV where the "winner" is up for grabs on a week-by-week basis. There are even fewer (any at all? ever?) where the winner could be any of five different shows on a week-by-week basis. But Tuesday 10/9c has been exactly that way since The Game, Teen Mom, and Tosh.0 all premiered on January 11. Here's how that struggle has developed since then.

    Spotted Ratings, Tuesday 3/8/11: Fox Owns Repeats & Weaklings

    • Perhaps the post-Idol exposure really did help Raising Hope, which was off of last week's result but up three-tenths from the last time it aired after Glee and above its season average. Glee was also up a couple ticks from its last original two weeks ago, but both shows had less competition with CBS in repeats. There was no such bump for Traffic Light, which shed nearly half the audience from its own post-Idol exposure last week and was down a tick from its last post-Hope ep two weeks ago.
    • Among the six series in repeats, the only noteworthy one was NCIS: Los Angeles, which hit a repeat series high, actually built by 13% on the against-Glee repeat of NCIS and was just 0.6 lower than its original episode last week (though that episode in part faced Idol).

    Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    Ratings Five-Spot, WE 3/6/11 - Charlie Sheen, Raising Hope, Sunday Reality, Army Wives, Breakout Kings

    Here's your Ratings Five-Spot for the week ending March 6, 2011:

    Charlie Sheen Week - His impact on TV ratings last week was tough to miss. He lifted CNN's Piers Morgan Tonight to its second-highest audience ever, ABC's 20/20 to its best demo in years (3.2), and NBC's Dateline (1.8) to its second-highest average of the season and NBC's best 10:00 showing (2.1) this week. But the highest-rated Charlie Sheen program of the bunch was the repeat of Two and a Half Men (3.3), which was Men's biggest repeat of the season and the second-biggest repeat rating for any show this season.

    Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Monday 3/7/11: A Troubling Turn of Event

    • The return of The Event pulled just a 1.4 demo, down 26% from where it ended 14 weeks ago. It didn't weather the hiatus storm nearly as well percentage-wise as last year's Flashforward and V, so maybe it'll have a "The hiatus killed us!" excuse a la Jericho, but only if it holds up from here. Either way, a 1.4 is not gonna be a renewable level. And Harry's Law was not helped a bit despite its smallest competition since its opening weeks and a slightly bigger lead-in.
    • The winner at 10:00 was the Hawaii Five-0 repeat, hitting its outright highest repeat numbers yet, even beating last week's repeat which had a much bigger lead-in with a Mike & Molly original. Elsewhere on CBS, week four of Mad Love dropped three more ticks with HIMYM in repeats.

    Opinion Five-Spot, WE 3/6/11 - The Chicago Code, Justified, America's Next Great Restaurant, Breakout Kings, The Event

    Here's my Opinion Five-Spot for the week ending March 6, 2011:

    The Chicago Code - Haven't seen this week's episode yet, just going by last week's, but I think my verdict on this show is that it is pretty compelling when Delroy Lindo is on the screen and relatively run-of-the-mill when he isn't. Alderman Gibbons is definitely one of TV's best villains of the moment, in part because I just want to find out what the deal is with him. That guy alone has me still watching. Jason Clarke and Jennifer Beals are better than I thought they'd be before the show began, but still nothing amazing.

    Monday, March 7, 2011

    Will the Hiatus "Kill" The Event?

    Tonight, NBC airs The Event for the first time in 14 weeks. Almost every long hiatus for a TV show is frowned upon by the fanbase, and if things haven't gone well in the final ratings analysis, there's a tendency to blame the hiatus for evaporating any remaining interest. Is that how it really shakes out in the numbers?

    Not really. Let's look at a few long in-season hiatuses. All these are first-season shows except for Lost, which I just threw on because its "pod" scheduling that year was particularly infamous.

    Spotted Ratings, Sunday 3/6/11: A Heaping Dose of Reality

    • The winner of reality premiere Sunday was definitely Secret Millionaire, which came in ahead of any of the show's six-episode run for Fox in late 2008. It built by 89% on its America's Funniest Home Videos lead-in and was also 27% ahead of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition's season high in the hour and about 50% ahead of EM:HE's average to date this season.
    • Death, taxes, and The Apprentice dropping. The 2.8 premiere for the fourth celeb edition was down 16% from last year's premiere, once again teaching us (or just me?) not to predict ratings based on Twitter trending topics! I guess it coulda been worse considering how awful the original-recipe version did in the fall, but I have to think the expectations were higher for this heavily-buzzed-about cast.
    • In an all-original hour with two unscripted series premieres, credit The Amazing Race for managing to tick up to a season high, and up 29% from its against-Oscar airing last week. I guess somebody had to get lost in the 8:00 reality shuffle, and that was the premiere of America's Next Great Restaurant (1.6)

    Scheduling Five-Spot, WE 3/6/11 - Shameless/Episodes, The Voice, Hot in Cleveland, HIMYM, Take the Money and Run

    Here's your Scheduling Five-Spot for the week ending March 6, 2011:

    Shameless/Episodes Renewed - Showtime has picked up season two of the two new programs in their recently concluded Sunday lineup, drama Shameless and comedy Episodes. The former was basically a no-brainer, as it made huge percentage gains on its comedy hour lead-in, but Episodes struggled to even get past the 0.2 A18-49 threshold. That said, pretty much everything that's ever aired on Showtime has gotten a season two, so... there you go.

    Sunday, March 6, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Saturday 3/5/11

    • Hard to say what it means when there's never been a regular season college basketball game in primetime for CBS before, so I'll just report that Duke/North Carolina pulled a 1.4 demo. That seems kinda soft, but I'm not sure what the expectations would've been.
    • Fox's lineup continues to do well of late, with Cops (1.7), the 8:30 Cops rerun (1.8), and America's Most Wanted (1.9) all up double-digits from their prior season averages for the second straight week.

    Saturday, March 5, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Friday 3/4/11: #winning Friday Night, Too

    • Charlie Sheen's appearance on Dateline vaulted the show to a 1.8 demo, its second-highest average of the season, including a 2.1 from 10:00-11:00. It was the net's best 10:00 hour showing this week so far, beating the likes of original Harry's Law (1.8) and Parenthood (1.9).
    • With Fox's NAACP Image Awards (0.6) well below the net's recent average and ABC's lineup strangely all 20%+ below their season averages to date (though in finals 20/20 rose slightly out of that range), the other beneficiary was CBS, where The Defenders (1.5) hit its highest Friday mark yet and both CSI:NY and Blue Bloods (1.4 each) hit their highest repeat numbers of the season.

    Friday, March 4, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Thursday 3/3/11: The Epic Showdown - Idol vs. Repeats

    • It was close, but the two-hour American Idol managed a victory, grabbing 61% of the adults 18-49 broadcast eyeballs in its two-hour timeslot. That's its highest broadcast share since February 9. It's also Idol's best Thursday performance since 1/29/09 and the best non-sports Thursday for any net since 3/8/07 (when Fox had a one-hour Idol plus Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?).
    • Mixed in with a bunch of repeats, Rules of Engagement had its second-worst showing ever, and worst since a special Wednesday airing on 5/13/09.
    • Everything else was a repeat, and most were at relatively typical repeat levels. Standouts included The Mentalist (1.9), which had its highest repeat rating of the season, and The Big Bang Theory (2.5), which was the highest-rated repeat of the night and also well above average among its repeats this season.

    Demos Year-to-Year, Wednesday 3/2/11

    And so ends another four weeks of year-to-year comparisons. As in February 2010, I basically spent the whole time apologizing for how unhelpful the comparisons were, but maybe next February we'll be past Olympics and be able to get something done! And these posts will return eight weeks from tonight and become the first thing ever on this blog to have a two-years-ago post!!!

    Thursday, March 3, 2011

    Encore! Which Shows/Genres Repeat the Best?

    A lot of primetime shows aren't defined entirely by the ratings they get in first-run telecasts. It may not be much of a stretch to say they count as two different shows. The second show is a lot weaker than the first, but it's also a lot cheaper. And for some strong shows that repeat well, that second show (the repeats) may be stronger than a lot of other first-run stuff! This won't be terribly new to anyone who follows TV ratings on a daily basis, but I thought it'd be neat to have the numbers out there.

    Spotted Ratings, Wednesday 3/2/11: New Show Rallies Sunny or Suspect?

    OK, I'm switching it up again. I'm gonna just do the "what matters" portion based on prelims and then paste in/format the table once the finals come out. This will hopefully end up being basically the same amount of work in total yet I get to say something earlier.

    • To answer the question in the headline, I'm going "suspect." Mr. Sunshine moved up a couple ticks from last week's 2.2, but that's nothing special considering the drastic drop in competition. (Its competition number was 12.6 last week.) It faced Traffic Light (2.8) this week rather than Idol (which averaged a 7.9 and was certainly higher than that by 9:30). And Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior also gained two ticks, but it can thank both the SVU repeat competition (1.6 vs. last week's original 2.5) and the even larger increase in lead-in (Criminal Minds was up from 3.2 to 3.6 week-to-week).
    • Traffic Light retained a measly 36% of the average demo from Idol (7.7), predictably doing about a half point worse than Raising Hope did with a similar lead-in yesterday. It does become the fourth new show to exceed its premiere demo, but that's no real achievement.
    • CW ratings lately have been pretty tough to watch, and this was another brutal day. Top Model (0.9) dropped two-tenths from its already soft premiere to an outright series low, while Shedding for the Wedding (0.4) shed one of its measly five-tenths from premiere week.

    Spotted Ratings, Tuesday 3/1/11: Idol Back on Tuesday

    • American Idol was back on Tuesday, where it regularly aired for its first nine seasons. Its 7.6 demo was about equal to what its combined broadcast competition got.
    • Every program that aired in the 8:00 hour against Idol was down double digits from its last original, and NCIS: LA (which half-aired against it) also took a big hit. Still a Death Star!
    • Raising Hope was certainly no smash given the Idol lead-in for the first time, as the half-hour program dropped 57%, but the 3.3 demo was a series high, making it just the third new program this year to exceed its series premiere demo. 
      • Meanwhile, 20/20 interviewed Charlie Sheen and hit a 3.2 demo, well better than any previous airing of the newsmagazine this season. The Good Wife seemed utterly unaffected, actually rising against the increased competition, while Parenthood did take a hit (but a hit about equal to that taken by its lead-in).

      Demos Year-to-Year, Tuesday 3/1/11

      Actually a fairly healthy number of show comparisons for this evening, though I should note that the Parenthood comparison is against the 3.1 for the series premiere in 2010.

      Wednesday, March 2, 2011

      Ratings Five-Spot, WE 2/27/11 - CBS Reality, Spartacus, Shedding for the Wedding, Oscar, Knicks/Heat

      Here's your Ratings Five-Spot for the week ending February 27, 2011:

      CBS Reality Franchises - It's been a few weeks since I've done one of these, and one of the standout stories for me over this time has been the downturn of CBS' Survivor and The Amazing Race, both of which premiered at series low levels and then took a dip in week two. Survivor can point to being regularly scheduled against American Idol for the first time, while the Race went up against Oscar in week two, but they're still potentially troublesome starts for franchises that have been pretty consistent recently.

      Spotted Ratings, Saturday 2/26/11

      •  Well, it is Saturday... but I guess I should note that Fox had a well-above average night, with Most Wanted hitting an outright season high and both Cops half-hours close to that distinction.

      SRs, Monday 2/28/11: Two and a Half Men, Three and Three-Tenths Rating

      • I'm working on a post (hopefully for late this week) about repeat telecasts in general, and that seems fitting because Two and a Half Men hit a season high 3.3 for a repeat, up three ticks week-to-week despite facing a decently-rated live Sheen interview with Piers Morgan. Only one other repeat telecast in the 2010-11 season has done better (Modern Family's 3.5 on 2/2/11).
      • Almost all other week-to-week moves were fairly insignificant (single digits percentage-wise), but it was another good week for ABC's lineup, with both shows at or near season-best levels.

      Demos Year-to-Year, Monday 2/28/11

      We're out of Olympic territory, but it still isn't a great evening for comparisons as a lot of stuff is in repeat mode, and in The Bachelor's case there's a non-finale vs. finale comparison. The show was actually 17% behind last season's third-from-the-end episode.

      Tuesday, March 1, 2011

      Demos Year-to-Year, Sunday 2/27/11

      For the last time, NBC had the Olympics (closing ceremony) last year. I'm also not including ABC because they had the Academy Awards this year but not last year. The show was down 11% from last year's show on March 7.

      Spotted Ratings, Sunday 2/27/11: Oscar Domination

      • Well, let's go with the Academy Awards. Oscar's 11.8 was down 11% year-to-year (from last year's 13.3) but it still grabbed the eyeballs of approximately 75% of adults 18-49 big-4 watchers. 
      • And that broadcast share woulda been higher if not for CBS throwing original programming against it in The Amazing Race and CSI: Miami. Since Race is a serialized reality show, that's not so much of a surprise, but I'd say Miami might have been a bit surprising. Both hit series lows.

      Opinion Five-Spot, WE 2/27/11 - V, Parenthood, Survivor, The Office, Fringe

      Here's my Opinion Five-Spot for the week ending February 27, 2011 (and to some extent the week before that as well, which I took off):

      V - The alien drama is sitting squarely on the fence ratings-wise, but I have to say I think I'm at a point where I wouldn't mind seeing more. Perhaps it's just the big void left behind by Lost, but the show has more forward momentum than when I gave up on it last year, and I think it's been a good idea to pit Anna's daughter (and mother, played by Jane Badler) against her. Downsides: the addition of Bret Harrison was pretty much a non-starter, and Erica's son remains a pretty terrible character, but... at least he got a haircut?

      Demos Year-to-Year, Friday 2/25/11

      NBC had the Olympics last year! (Only one more post in which I have to say that...)

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