Monday, February 28, 2011

War of 18-49 Update, Two and a Half Men (2010-11)


I'm not confident enough at this point to speculate one way or another on future seasons of Two and a Half Men, but I'm pretty sure the show is done with originals for this season. So I'm gonna go ahead and do this update, just because it'll be one less to do during the summer! Let's take a look at the 2010-11 season (the show's eighth overall) of Two and a Half Men on CBS.

Scheduling Five-Spot, WE 2/27/11 - NBC Reality, American Dad!, Hell's Kitchen, Glory Daze, Two and a Half Men


Not included is the episode slash for No Ordinary Family, seemingly sealing the fate of the once-promising newbie. Here's your Scheduling Five-Spot for the week ending February 27, 2011:

NBC Reality Renewals - NBC has renewed three reality series. The two no-brainers were The Biggest Loser and The Sing-Off, both of which rank among NBC's strongest programs (despite the big losses for Loser recently). The other one was Who Do You Think You Are?, which has averaged just a 1.30 demo through its first four eps this season on Friday. That's not huge enough to make a renewal this early seem obvious, but it isn't terrible compared to other NBC Friday efforts like School Pride (0.67 average).

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Bureaucratic Notes


A few notes about the site going forward, just in case you're into that sort of thing:

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Spotted Ratings, Friday 2/25/11: Newsmagazine Fluctuation


WHAT MATTERS:
  • Nothing of real significance this Friday. Minor stories include the rise of Blue Bloods from its disappointing return to the night last week and the typical newsmagazine fluctuation (though even that's not really interesting, as both posted almost exactly season-average numbers).

Demos Year-to-Year, Thursday 2/24/11


NBC had the Olympics last year. Just two more posts in which I have to say that...!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Spotted Ratings, Thursday 2/24/11: The Death Star Enters New Territory


WHAT MATTERS:
  • The big story was a two-hour Idol on Thursday for the first time. Though it had its lowest average on Thursday this season, it still sent ABC's and CBS's competition at 9:00 down. Grey's hit an outright series-low 3.3, two tenths below the previous series low from last April, while CSI tied a series-low 2.7 that it previously achieved this fall. (Grey's ended up with a 3.4 in the finals, but that was still an outright low. The Office dropped to a 3.2 in finals, which was outright its lowest rating since season 1 back in 2005, so it also gets the red treatment.)
  • Rules of Engagement did not do meaningfully better than $#*! My Dad Says in its move to Thursday and came in lower than any of its Monday results (tied with the 2.8 Mad Love pulled back in Rules' old slot this week).

First Two Weeks, Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior


CRIMINAL MINDS: SUSPECT BEHAVIOR (CBS)


Demos Year-to-Year, Wednesday 2/23/11


NBC had the Olympics last year...! Week three will also go recap-less. We'll see about week four, since there will be a few full days without the Olympics.

Demos Year-to-Year, Tuesday 2/22/11


NBC had the Olympics last year...!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Spotted Ratings, Wednesday 2/23/11: New Shows' Behavior is Suspect


WHAT MATTERS:
  • Week two of Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior looks rather... uh, suspect. More to come in the show's First Two Weeks post tonight or tomorrow, but the 24% drop is not exactly encouraging. It's still a little ways from getting into later Defenders territory in the hour, though. (Became a 27% drop after finals.)
  • Another year, another DOA CW midseason reality effort. Shedding for the Wedding's 0.5 lost more than half of Top Model and ties it with the premiere of last year's High Society. It was much weaker than any airing of Hellcats in the hour earlier this season. I guess if one cared enough, one might note that High Society's Top Model lead-in last year was much bigger, though.
  • Speaking of that, the Top Model premiere is the show's weakest ever, down two ticks from the fall premiere and five ticks (31%) from the year-ago premiere.

    First Two Weeks, Mad Love


    MAD LOVE (CBS)


    Wednesday, February 23, 2011

    Demos Year-to-Year, Monday 2/21/11


    NBC had the Olympics in 2010, so there are only two show comparisons, and one of those is repeat-vs.-repeat!

    Demos Year-to-Year, Sunday 2/20/11


    NBC had the Olympics in 2010, in case you have never read any of these before!!! Still, a surprisingly rich collection of comparisons on this evening. Most shows dropped despite the lack of Olympic competition, and Family Guy was barely able to build on a year-ago repeat.

    Spotted Ratings, Tuesday 2/22/11: NCIS over Glee, P'hood over Good Wife


    WHAT MATTERS:
    • By this time a year from now (if not much sooner), we'll talk about this like it's nothing, but it's worth noting on the first night it happens; NCIS beats Glee heads-up. Still a pretty decent showing from Glee, though. (They ended up tied in rating in the finals, but I'm still giving NCIS the win because it has a larger share... meaning it was bigger beyond the first decimal.)
    • Also rare this season has been Parenthood beating The Good Wife, something that happened somewhat frequently during the shows' first seasons and that many thought would continue into this year. It happened here. It's a series-low showing for Wife, which loses more than half of the NCIS: LA demo for the first time. (This number was adjusted in finals from -51% to -49%.)
    • The only week-to-week listings change was a special Tuesday edition of Primetime: What Would You Do?, which was up only a bit from recent Detroit 1-8-7 airings and down from most of its Friday performances this season. Looks like it's best as a Friday show.

    Tuesday, February 22, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Monday 2/21/11: Post-Valentine's ABC Rally


    Trying a quick rundown-type thing to go with my table experiment. This one is actually longer than I envision most of them being, as there are usually not this many interesting things going on. Let me know what you think.

    WHAT MATTERS: 
    • Believe in the power of Valentine's Day? The lineup I'd intuitively expect to be most affected, ABC's female-heavy Bachelor/Castle, indeed picked back up almost 20% from last week's Valentine's-thrashed results. Though there is a margin of error in my HUT calculations, viewing levels appeared to be up overall. (By hour, it was 35/36/34 last week and 38/38/35 this week.)
    • This marked the first week since Two and a Half Men ran out of originals due to Sheengate, and the ramifications were noticeable for Mike & Molly and Hawaii Five-0, both of which fell to series lows. (Five-0 was adjusted up in finals to a seven-way tie for a series low 2.8.) As the return of DWTS looms, we may be nearing a point when Castle starts topping Five-0 at 10:00.
    • Mad Love lost two ticks from last week's premiere. Usually, a 7% drop in week two is cause for celebration, but the 2.8 demo would be behind any airing of Rules of Engagement in the slot this season... 

    Monday, February 21, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Sunday 2/20/11


    Despite ABC's lineup rallying week-to-week from the Grammy shalacking, that still left the latter two shows well below their averages this season. Same goes for Fox's animation. The former two ABC shows did get back above average, though. Undercover Boss and probably (missing a few early data points) The Amazing Race hit series lows. SNL specials remain an unbelievably reliable grabber of decent ratings.

    Sunday, February 20, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Saturday 2/19/11


    FYI, for today these 18-49 ratings are averages of the half-hours rather than actual program ratings, which is why some of the difference-from-lead-in numbers might look a little off.

    Spotted Ratings, Friday 2/18/11



    Friday, February 18, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Thursday 2/17/11


    As has been the case pretty consistently since I started posting these four days ago... lots of series lows, almost everything struggling, etc. Might try to work on some larger perspective on this later today.

    Demos Year-to-Year, Wednesday 2/16/11


    No winners/losers recap for this week as so many repeats populated the schedule one year ago. As mentioned in previous posts, NBC is still airing the Olympics on the corresponding evening in 2010.

    Thursday, February 17, 2011

    First Two Weeks, Mr. Sunshine


    MR. SUNSHINE (ABC)



    Spotted Ratings, Wednesday 2/16/11


    Another brutal day on broadcast, with almost everything plunging double digits from its last original. A lot of the 9:00 hour shows owe that in large part to facing Idol this week but not last week. Survivor joins a long tradition of unscripted shows getting pretty badly hurt by facing Idol.

    Demos Year-to-Year, Tuesday 2/15/11


    Once again, NBC had the Olympics so a lot of the nets went with repeats, lots of useless comparisons, yadda yadda.

    Wednesday, February 16, 2011

    First Two Weeks, Traffic Light


    TRAFFIC LIGHT (FOX)


    Spotted Ratings, Tuesday 2/15/11


    Another pretty brutal day on broadcast, with only three programs even managing to fall less than 10% away from their prior season average, and only One Tree Hill and V managing to increase from their most recent original.

    First Two Weeks, The Chicago Code


     THE CHICAGO CODE (FOX)



    Demos Year-to-Year, Monday 2/14/11


    Been under the weather the last couple days, so I might continue to be a little slow getting some of this stuff out. Not a great evening of comparisons as most nets went heavily repeat against the Olympics.

    Tuesday, February 15, 2011

    Spotted Ratings, Monday 2/14/11


    So I had a lot of stuff typed up over the weekend and it got eaten by Blogger. Quick version: I've spent much of the last couple weeks working on a spreadsheet that gives me a lot of numbers just by entering the ratings. I'm gonna try posting it every day for a little while and see how it goes. Will say more later this week. Any feedback is welcome, as this is all pretty up in the air and experimental. Sorry if it seems a little overwhelming at the moment!

    Opinion Five-Spot, WE 2/13/11 - Traffic Light, Parenthood, Mr. Sunshine, Justified, Mad Love


    Here's my Opinion Five-Spot for the week ending February 13, 2011:

    Traffic Light - If there were a shade of blue between the "meh" and this "good," that's what I'd give Traffic Light. Maybe it was the low expectations (as the premise is just as generic as the other umpteen relationship shows premiering this season), maybe it was the Office guest stars playing two of the lead male roles, but I kinda detected a low-key Office sensibility here. Needs to get funnier, but I definitely saw a pretty decent foundation. Nice to see David Denman playing something other than a dunderhead romantic foil.

    Monday, February 14, 2011

    Demos Year-to-Year, Sunday 2/13/11



    Scheduling Five-Spot, WE 2/13/11 - Smallville, Keith Olbermann, The Hard Times of RJ Berger, The League, The Killing


    Lots of pilot casting and pickups this week, but I typically avoid calling that "scheduling news" since all those shows are still a pretty long way from actually getting onto a schedule. So I managed to pick out five tidbits that will actually affect schedules! Here's your Scheduling Five-Spot for the week ending February 13, 2011:

    Smallville - The CW has scheduled the two-hour series finale of long-running drama Smallville for May 13. It'll be interesting to see if any of the old fans come back for the end. (The net has already announced Michael Rosenbaum will reprise his role as Lex Luthor.) The show is averaging just a 1.11 in adults 18-49 this season, less than a third of the numbers it frequently achieved in the early seasons.

    Saturday, February 12, 2011

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


    We're now into comparisons against 2010 evenings when NBC was airing the Winter Olympics. I continue to avoid comparing regular programming to sports, but that's the reason for so many repeats in 2010. Suffice to say NBC was much, much stronger last year than this year, and that will continue to be the case for awhile. (This time, it's a 9.4 rating during primetime for last year's opening ceremony vs. 1.4 for this year's Dateline and Who Do You Think You Are?) So keep that in mind when you look at the timeslot comparisons.

    Friday, February 11, 2011

    Demos Year-to-Year, Thursday 2/10/11



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


    I should have done this long ago, probably, but from now on the top 5 lists are going to consist of original-vs.-original comparisons only.

    Top 5 year-to-year show losers
    1. CSI: NY (F9-10pm vs. W10-11pm) -42%
    2. Fringe (F9-10pm vs. Th9-10pm) -38%
    3. Super Bowl's Greatest Commercials (F9-10pm vs. W8-9pm) -31%
    4. The Good Wife -29%
    5. Private Practice -24%

    The top three show losers are all Friday imports. CSI: NY was a mainstay on this list in November, while Fringe has the misfortune of its Friday "death slot" slip corresponding with its big surge around this time last year. The Good Wife continues to have ratings issues (though its big drop is relative to a series-high 3.1 last year) while Private Practice is seeing its performance relative to lead-in Grey's Anatomy begin to erode. (Grey's was down just 4%.)

    Wednesday, February 9, 2011

    Demos Year-to-Year, Tuesday 2/8/11



    Ratings Five-Spot, WE 2/6/11 - Parks & Recreation/Fringe, The Defenders, Who Do You Think You Are?, Super Bowl/Glee, The Chicago Code


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

    Parks & Recreation/Fringe - Both of these much-hyped returns looked good out of the gate and kept the hype machines at almost full force for week two. Then came the week three drop. Parks hit a 2.4 demo, down 25% from the two-weeks-ago premiere and worryingly retaining less than two-thirds of the Office demo. Fringe got a 1.9 its first two weeks but (perhaps with the return of Supernatural factoring in) dropped off three tenths in its third Friday ep. I'd say if they're not in danger yet, they're getting close.

    Tuesday, February 8, 2011

    Demos Year-to-Year, Monday 2/7/11



    Super Bowl XLV and Glee Ratings Facts


    Thought about making this a series of tweets, but I came to realize it would be a very long series. So here's some info about Fox's Sunday. I'm importing the numbers from TravisYanan.

    Super Bowl XLV

    - 111.010 million viewers
    - 46.0/69 HH
    - 39.9/77 A18-49
    • Largest audience in the history of US television.
    • The viewership is up 4% year-to-year (from 106.48 million, the previous US TV record) and the adults 18-49 rating is up 3% year-to-year (from 38.6). The adults 18-49 share increased by about 3% from 75 last year.
    • The 46.0 household rating is the highest for a Super Bowl since 1986. Eight Super Bowls (all taking place from 1978 to 1986) have had a higher household rating.

    Super Bowl XLV Postgame

    Super Bowl Post Gun (10:09pm, 4 minutes, included in above game average)
    - 97.160 million viewers
    - 40.6/62 HH
    - 36.8/71 A18-49

    Super Bowl Post Game (10:13pm, 26 minutes)
    - 66.031 million viewers
    - 28.4/46 HH
    - 25.5/55 A18-49

    • The 26-minute postgame is tied for the longest in the last five years, but all of the last five were approximately the same length (none shorter than 23 minutes).
    • The postgame is the second-most viewed and has the third-highest demo in the last five years. The strongest postgame in both those categories was the 2010 one (which had 75.47m viewers and a 29.1/59 demo).
    • The postgame start time was comparable to those in 2008 (10:12) and 2009 (10:16) but significantly later than those in 2007 (10:04) and especially 2010 (9:50).

    Glee

    - 26.796 million viewers
    - 13.6/25 HH
    - 11.1/29 A18-49

    • The viewer number ranks fifth highest among the last ten Super Bowl lead-outs. The viewer retention of the game number (24.1%) ranks eighth highest among the last ten. Only The Office in 2009 (23.2%) and Alias in 2003 (19.6%) have done worse in the last ten years. Year-to-year, it's down 31% from Undercover Boss.
    • The adults 18-49 rating ranks fifth highest among the last ten Super Bowl lead-outs. The A18-49 retention of the game number (27.8%) ranks ninth highest among the last ten. Only Alias in 2003 (22.5%) was worse. Year-to-year, it's down 31% from Undercover Boss.
    • The 10:39 start time was comparable to House in 2008 (10:38) and The Office in 2009 (10:40) but later than Criminal Minds in 2007 (10:27) and much later than last year's Undercover Boss (10:13).
    My old post with Super Bowl and lead-out viewer/demo info for the last ten years is here (and has links to older viewership and HH info).

      Opinion Five-Spot, WE 2/6/11 - Community, Fringe, Super Bowl, Glee, The Chicago Code


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

      Community - It's been a few years since my last game of Dungeons & Dragons, but I've played it a handful of times. Enough to pick up many more references than in plenty of this show's other pop-culture eps, at least! I was almost frightened by how deeply villainous Pierce Hawthorne became, but after thinking about it a bit... I say bring it on. That character's always sort of been on the fringes of the show, and giving him a role this clearly defined hopefully makes the character more interesting than he's usually been so far.

      Monday, February 7, 2011

      Demos Year-to-Year, Super Bowl Sunday 2/6/11


      Now updated for finals.

      Scheduling Five-Spot, WE 2/6/11 - Rules of Engagement/Mike & Molly, The Cape, NCIS, Chase, Return Dates


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

      Rules of Engagement/Mike & Molly - Two and a Half Men's likely episode losses are Rules of Engagement and Mike & Molly's episode gains, as both shows got a pair of additional episodes added to their season orders (bringing each to 26). Those episodes will likely teach us more about both shows, particularly M&M, which has yet to air an original episode without the 2.5 Men lead-in and has had a retention percentage (81%) similar to that of previous post-Men shows Rules and The New Adventures of Old Christine.

      Saturday, February 5, 2011

      Demos Year-to-Year, Friday 2/4/11


      As I said yesterday, so I don't have to wait a couple days on the weekend ratings, I'll be doing Demos Year-to-Year based on prelims for the Friday and Sunday posts, then going back and adjusting for finals later. EDIT: Now updated for finals vs. finals. (No adjustments from prelims.)

      Friday, February 4, 2011

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


      It's sweeps, so we're back into the year-to-year swing! See the Index for all previous efforts. Since I can't seem to settle on one way of doing this, the obligatory logistical changes: I might not do the usual weekly recaps as the Winter Olympics in 2010 will create a bunch of messed-up comparisons. (I didn't do recaps in February 2010 either.) We'll see how they look as we move forward. The other change is that I'll try to do the weekend comparisons (Friday and Sunday) based on preliminary ratings so I can get them out more quickly, then make adjustments later when finals come out. Other posts will almost certainly just come once in the evening based on finals, since it's only a few extra hours.

      A Lost Year? Revisiting 2010-11 New Shows So Far


      I've read a lot of TV media stuff in recent years about how broadcast network audiences are on the decline and that broadcast needs a good development year to stop it from spiraling out of control. Last year (2009-10) was clearly a good development year, with each network having at least one decent success story. Despite continued overall broadcast declines, the media was more than happy to make the good year for new shows into the narrative, and that was somewhat deserved.

      This year, they won't even have that. I looked at this dreadful season of newbies as a whole very early in the season, but as we begin February sweeps 2011 with still no truly legit scripted successes from anyone, it seems like I should revisit it, as it's definitely (and unfortunately) one of the season's biggest stories.

      How many will get renewed?

      One of the key tenets of my ongoing "system" experiment for new shows is the idea that about a third of new shows on average make it to a season 2. Last season, 13 of 30 new shows were renewed (43%). This year, it could very well be the opposite case, with less than a third of shows renewed and multiple "excellent" shows failing.

      We've got 26 new shows so far, and here's what the "system" thinks about them. The last post (Perfect Couples) has the full "system" update and links to all the individual First Two Weeks posts. (I'm too lazy to transfer 25 other links over, sorry.)

      EXCELLENT (5-6 points): Hawaii Five-0, Mike & Molly (6 points), The Event, $#*! My Dad Says, No Ordinary Family (5 points)
      BORDERLINE (3-4 points): Law & Order: Los Angeles, Outsourced, Raising Hope, Blue Bloods, Bob's Burgers, Off the Map (4 points), The Defenders, Nikita, Hellcats, Better with You (3 points)
      IN TROUBLE (0-2 points): Detroit 1-8-7, Chase, The Cape, Running Wilde, Harry's Law (2 points), The Whole Truth, Perfect Couples (1 point), Outlaw, Undercovers, My Generation, Lone Star (0 points)

      Let me break this down more subjectively using much more than two weeks:

      Renewed/very good shot at renewal (90-100%): Raising Hope, Hawaii Five-0, Mike & Molly (3/26)
      Good shot at renewal (50-90%): Blue Bloods, Nikita, Hellcats, Harry's Law (4/26)
      Some shot at renewal (10-50%): The Event, $#*! My Dad Says, No Ordinary Family, Law & Order: Los Angeles, Outsourced, Better with You, Off the Map, Bob's Burgers (8/26)
      Cancelled/virtually no shot at renewal (0-10%): The Defenders, Detroit 1-8-7, Chase, The Cape, Running Wilde, The Whole Truth, Perfect Couples, Outlaw, Undercovers, My Generation, Lone Star (11/26)

      So these are the "tiers" as I see them right now. Feel free to quibble, but I think it's pretty close. If you green the entirety of the top two tiers (and frankly, I don't think any of the "good shot" shows are totally safe right now), you still need to find two in the "some shot" category to get past the typical one-third mark. That's not so ridiculous, but this year won't make it into 2009-10 territory percentage-wise. You'd need four of those eight renewed, which I don't see, or maybe a bunch of successes that haven't debuted yet.

      However, looking at it in renew/cancel terms sorta misses the real story. It doesn't look quite so dire from that angle. With lots of shows still barely hanging on and several more still to premiere, we could very well wind up with a third or more of the shows getting renewed. It'd still likely be a bad year for new shows. Why?

      No hits.

      Let's look at just those top seven shows, the ones I think are pretty likely to come back. 

      The renewed Raising Hope: It's certainly the strongest live-action Fox comedy in awhile (2.65 average to date), and its most recent originals (in late November and early December) were on the upswing relative to the big Glee lead-in. Deserves its renewal, but it's still been losing a pretty healthy chunk from Glee.  

      Mike & Molly: Easily the highest-rated new show in 18-49 (3.67) and there's no real doubt it should continue, but it's still holding only 81% of its 2.5 Men lead-in on average, very slightly down from the historic percentages of Old Christine (83%) and Rules of Engagement (84%) and we've seen how those shows ultimately did apart from Men. It's certainly not in the realm of what The Big Bang Theory did last year (it built by 7% on Men on average). With Men's production hiatus, we are probably going to learn a lot more about this show in the coming months.

      Hawaii Five-0: The biggest new broadcast drama, and nothing even comes close. It's also one of the strongest 10:00 dramas on TV. But many consider its 3.09 Monday average to date underwhelming relative to the lofty expectations.

      Blue Bloods: A reasonable success in 18-49 on Friday (1.80 average on that night) but has not proven a good player elsewhere. It's had trouble even getting past a 2.0 in its Wednesday tryouts despite a good Criminal Minds lead-in, then tanked to a 1.6 once Minds hit repeats.

      Nikita: Not much of a draw in the CW's target W18-34 (just a 1.23 average there). It is one of the stronger CW shows in 18-49 (1.03 average) but it probably owes a lot of that to The Vampire Diaries. It loses over a third of that 18-49 audience (1.56) on average. Frequently pegged as a companion to Supernatural on Fridays next season.

      Hellcats: Still stronger than Nikita in W18-34 (1.59 average) and probably renewal-worthy in A18-49 (0.93) but has also mostly just held decently to big lead-ins, first Top Model and now One Tree Hill (where it lost a third of the 18-49 and over 40% of the young women this week).

      Harry's Law: It still hasn't faced an original Five-0 since premiere week, so I'm only cautiously optimistic. And the biggest positive here is not so much the great ratings, but simply how much better it's doing than The Cape. It's still only getting a 2.1 demo. Nothing to write home about.

      A pretty underwhelming crop of "strongest new shows," to be sure. They're all either modest self-starters or... well, in most cases, not self-starters. Compare this to last season. I think you'd have to go through a lot of new shows before you get to about where the above group is. Stuff like Glee, Modern Family, and The Vampire Diaries were all game-changers (by their networks' standards) and there's been nothing at all like that this year. You may even have to go through some second-tier 2009-10 stuff like NCIS: LA, The Cleveland Show, Cougar Town, and The Middle before you get to about the level of this year's best. Yikes.

      Upcoming?

      The best hope for a good year for new shows is a breakout in the next three and a half months or so. There will be plenty more chances that will get good lead-in support: Mr. Sunshine and Happy Endings in the ABC comedy block, Body of Proof after Dancing with the Stars, the Criminal Minds spinoff Suspect Behavior will air after the mothership, Mad Love will air after How I Met Your Mother, and Fox has The Chicago Code airing post-House and Traffic Light after Raising Hope starting next week.

      Until then, it's looking like exactly the kind of development year broadcast TV didn't need.

      Wednesday, February 2, 2011

      Ratings Five-Spot, WE 1/30/11 - Pawn Stars, Kourtney & Kim, Shameless, The Lost Valentine, Human Target/Lie to Me


      Boy, there were a lot of ratings this week, but not many of them really meant anything. Let's try to make five ratings results from this week sound interesting! Here's your Ratings Five-Spot for the week ending January 30, 2011:

      Pawn Stars - I mentioned the Pawn Stars a little over a month ago when they matched their series high A18-49 with a 2.5. They've since broken through even that ceiling, with the episodes on 1/24 hitting series high 2.6 and 2.8, and then Monday of the current week they tacked on another couple tenths and posted 2.8 and 3.0. Almost nothing on broadcast can hit a 3.0 at 10:30! The total audience also plowed past 7 million this week for the first time ever. It all signifies that this has become a really big-time show.

      Tuesday, February 1, 2011

      Opinion Five-Spot, WE 1/30/11 - Harry's Law, Royal Pains, Parks & Recreation, Fairly Legal, Working Class


      Here's my Opinion Five-Spot for the week ending January 30, 2011:

      Harry's Law - I loved previous David E. Kelley effort Boston Legal, and my thought after the Harry's Law pilot was "watered-down Boston Legal." Kathy Bates' Harriet Korn still seems like a sort of mash-up of the three leads on that show. But I think in the two post-pilot eps to date, some of the "wackiness" has been dialed back just a bit, maybe for the better. Not sure where on the "Boston Legal vs. actual drama" spectrum this should fall, but I'm sticking around for now. Could use some cast expansion if renewed.

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