Friday, November 4, 2011

Demos Year-to-Year, November Sweeps 2011 Week One Winners/Losers

As I usually do with my year-to-year posts, at the end of each week I take a look at the biggest of the big gainers and losers among adults 18-49. You can click the "y2y summaries" label to see the various forms those have taken in past sweeps. This time, back to looking at the top 5 gainers and losers.

The rules for what qualifies for these lists seemingly change with every new sweep, but for now, I'm going with this: all totally original vs. original comparisons qualify and all repeat vs. repeat comparisons qualify (except for Saturdays, sports overruns and pregame shows). Original vs. repeat comparisons only qualify for the losers lists and repeat vs. original comparisons only qualify for the winners lists. These rules kind of muck up some of the lists this week, but we'll go with it.

Top 5 year-to-year show losers
1. Chuck (F 8-9pm vs. M 8-9pm) -50%
2. Community (Th 8:30-9pm vs. Th 8-8:30pm) -42%
3. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (F 8-10pm vs. Su 8-9pm) -40%
4. Nikita (F 8-9pm vs. Th 9-10pm) -40%
5. America's Next Top Model (W 9-10pm vs. W 8-9pm) -38%

As is typical of the show loser list every year, there's a lot of presence from shows that got moved to Friday. Chuck, Makeover and Nikita all made the Friday move this season (and also had to face Game 7 of the World Series this particular week). Supernatural is another Friday show just missing this list, though that's a Friday-vs.-Friday comparison. (The big change in circumstance is that it lost the Smallville lead-in this year.) The two same-day comparisons are Community, which moved to 8:30 and had a solid-rated holiday special leading in last year, and Top Model, which... still doesn't really have much of an excuse.

Top 5 year-to-year show gainers
1. 60 Minutes (Su 7:30-8:30pm vs. Su 7-8pm) +193%
2. Sunday Night Football +27%
3. Modern Family +19%
4. The Amazing Race (Su 8:30-9:30pm vs. Su 8-9pm) +15%
5. How I Met Your Mother +14%

Two of these are only on the list because CBS had the NFL overrun this week and didn't have it in the year-ago week, although a lot of credit should go to 60 Minutes anyway; its rating was much higher than normal even accounting for the overrun due to its interviews with the Madoff family. Sunday Night Football had a great matchup. That leaves the two "true" gainers. Modern Family has taken the next step this year and is now the biggest scripted show on TV. And it might be time to start giving How I Met Your Mother some credit; I still feel like most people are attributing its gains to the Two and a Half Men "halo," and maybe that's part of it, but those samplers are sticking with HIMYM to a much greater extent than they are with Men itself.

Top 5 year-to-year timeslot losers
1. Rock Center vs. SNL Special: Women of SNL (NBC, Monday 10-11pm) -52%
t-2. Nikita vs. Smallville (CW, Friday 8-9pm) -50%
t-2. Harry's Law vs. Law and Order: SVU (NBC, Wednesday 9-10pm) -50%
4. Allen Gregory vs. World Series Game 4 (Fox, Sunday 8:30-9pm) -47%
5. Community vs. Scared Shrekless (NBC, Wednesday 8-8:30pm) -46%

Kinda surprised just one vs.-year-ago-World Series comparison from Sunday/Monday makes the top 5, though several others just missed. Nikita has struggled on Friday, but it was clear coming in that it wouldn't match the year-ago Smallville. Otherwise, it's just a few more NBC trouble spots, with the premiere of Rock Center and the Halloween Community both way down from year-ago specials. Harry's Law has not been able to make demo inroads in its new home.

Top 5 year-to-year timeslot gainers
1. New Girl vs. Fox Election Coverage (Fox, Tuesday 9-9:30pm) +260% 
2. Raising Hope vs. Fox Election Coverage (Fox, Tuesday 9:30-10pm) +213%
3. Once Upon a Time vs. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (ABC, Sunday 8-9pm) +117%
4. 60 Minutes vs. 60 Minutes/The Amazing Race (CBS, Sunday 7:30-8:30pm) +105%
5. Unforgettable vs. CBS Election Coverage (CBS, Tuesday 10-11pm) +77%

I'll stick with my hard rule of all original-vs.-original comparisons even though most of these aren't really that meaningful. Midterm election coverage, particularly on Fox and CBS, is weak. We talked about 60 Minutes and the overrun issues. So the only really legit growth in this list is Once Upon a Time, which is singlehandedly revitalizing ABC's otherwise-imploding Sundays. If not for the election coverage, other shows to make this list would be Chuck (vs. year-ago megabomb School Pride), Grimm (vs. year-ago Dateline) and Revenge (vs. year-ago Robin Roberts special).

Here are this premiere week's daily posts, in case you missed any:
Thursday | Friday | Sunday | Monday | Tuesday | Wednesday

And here are the previous recaps of this same week:
2009 | 2010

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