Friday, February 10, 2012

Demos Year-to-Year, February Sweeps 2012 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.

Top 5 year-to-year show losers
1. 30 Rock (Th 8-8:30pm vs. Th 10-10:30pm) -46%
2. Nikita (F 8-9pm vs. Th 9-10pm) -44%
3. Dateline (F 10-11pm vs. F 9-11pm) -42%
4. House -42%
5. Parks and Recreation (Th 8:30-9pm vs. Th 9:30-10pm) -29%

It's been the "year of the comedy" for pretty much everyone but NBC, as you can see by two of their comedies making this list. To be fair, both of those shows also moved into tougher situations, facing Idol in the lead-off hour. Also, NBC claimed 30 Rock got hosed by some program guide mix-ups. But even if it got the 1.5 demo they think it shoulda gotten, it'd still make this list! (At -38%) Nikita's a Friday exile, while Dateline is losing the Friday 10/9c battle with 20/20 in a big way.

Then there's House, down 42% from its Super Monday 2011 airing. Later in the week, it was announced it's done after this season. Coincidence?! Probably so, since huge year-to-year drops are nothing new for this House season. There's a chance House could finish down by 25%+ in three of its last four seasons, which I guess says a lot about how big the show once was; most shows don't have the ratings cushion to be able to weather multiple drops of that size.

Top 5 year-to-year show gainers
1. The Big Bang Theory +28%
2. Modern Family +8%
3. Primetime: What Would You Do? +8%
4. How I Met Your Mother +5%
5. The Super Bowl +2%

Most of those comedies which soared so much year-to-year in the fall have come back to earth to some extent in the winter. Modern Family and HIMYM are both still undoubtedly impressive, but the 20%+ gains of November are gone. (To be fair, both could jump back up next week; Modern Family was well above average last year, while the CBS lineup could rebound if The Voice drops.) The one exception: The Big Bang Theory, which continues to defy all logic by not just beating American Idol but actually growing its demo against it.

Top 5 year-to-year timeslot losers
1. The Firm vs. 30 Rock/Outsourced (NBC, Thursday 10-11pm) -62%
2. Rock Center vs. Minute to Win It (NBC, Wednesday 9-10pm) -51%
3. Nikita vs. Smallville (CW, Friday 8-9pm) -50%
4. Dateline (NBC, Friday 10-11pm) -49%
5. House (Fox, Monday 8-9pm) -42%

NBC had a nice Sunday/Monday, but that didn't exactly cure all ills. They still have a couple timeslots struggling to do half the numbers of year-ago shows that are no longer even with us.

Top 5 year-to-year timeslot gainers
1. The Voice vs. Chuck/The Cape (NBC, Monday 8-10pm) +339%
2. Smash vs. Harry's Law (NBC, Monday 10-11pm) +124%
3. Last Man Standing vs. No Ordinary Family (ABC, Tuesday 8-9pm) +66%
4. The River vs. V/Detroit 1-8-7 (ABC, Tuesday 9-11pm) +57%
5. 20/20 vs. Barbara Walters Special (ABC, Friday 10-11pm) +55%

Enough has been made of NBC's Monday, I think! ABC's new Tuesday was generally considered underwhelming, but remember that they've historically had a lot of trouble on this night between Dancing cycles. If The River can somehow settle around 2.0 and Body of Proof pulls its mid-1's, it'll still be an up evening for the network.

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

Usually, I link to previous recaps of the same week here, but because of Olympics and digital transitions, this is our first "good" February sweep since I started doing these. So there's only one recap from the previous two years, 2011 Week One

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