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.

Spartacus: Gods of the Arena - Starz finally seemed to get on the original programming map with season one of Spartacus: Blood and Sand, and prequel miniseries Gods of the Arena has taken the franchise up another notch. The finale got 1.72 million viewers and a 0.8/2 in A18-49, both significantly better than any previous airing of Blood and Sand (which peaked at 1.29m/0.6) or Gods. It would seem to bode well for the return of Blood and Sand, which is dealing with a change in lead due to Andy Whitfield's cancer.

Shedding for the Wedding - Last week's series premiere was not-another-post-Model-reality-flop Shedding for the Wedding on the CW, which managed just a 0.5 A18-49 and 1.0 W18-34 (both holding in the vicinity of half the Top Model lead-in). Sadly, it's probably not the worst premiere they've had in this hour (last year's docudrama attempts Fly Girls and High Society did similar numbers out of a much stronger Model) but that doesn't mean much; it's still much weaker than any Hellcats airing from this fall.

Academy Awards - It's a given that Oscar will roll everything in its path, so the year-to-year comparisons are a more important gauge. And the show's 37.92 million viewers and 11.8/30 A18-49 were down 9% in viewers and 11% in the demo year-to-year. Yes, that means the show actually skewed very slightly more outside of the demo despite their much-joked-about attempts to appeal to a younger demographic with hosts James Franco and Anne Hathaway. The 11.8 was the second-weakest demo in recent history.

NBA: Knicks vs. Heat - Among attempts to counterprogram Oscar, the winner was probably ESPN, whose Knicks/Heat game (the first meeting between Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James on their new teams) scored a 1.9 A18-49 rating. That's really good for an NBA game and was comparable to the numbers put up by Fox and CBS in the same time period on Sunday (and CBS actually had some originals in Amazing Race and CSI: Miami).

More Five-Spots in the Index.

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