Friday, November 1, 2013

First Two Weeks, Reign

The CW's Reign kicked off in the post-The Vampire Diaries slot with a mediocre 0.78 rating in 18-49, a couple notches below the preview of The Originals aired in the slot two weeks prior (1.0). It held about 60% of its lead-in from The Vampire Diaries, which surged to 1.3. Its retention was the same or just a bit worse in the 18-34 demos, where it had a 0.7 A18-34 (out of a 1.3 TVD) and a 1.0 W18-34 (out of a 1.8). One of Reign's key competitors Glee was off on this evening, though Reign did have to face the young females draw Grey's Anatomy (2.7).

Reign dropped by a relatively typical 19% in week two to a 0.63 rating in 18-49. It was down by more than that in the younger demos, to a 0.5 A18-34 and a 0.7 W18-34. Its lead-in from The Vampire Diaries (1.3) was pretty much steady across the board.

As worrying as fellow newbie The Tomorrow People's drops have been in weeks three and four, I'd still give it the edge over Reign right now, because it doesn't have the same kind of lead-in support as Reign. Reign is down to 50% retention or worse in week two, so even if it stabilized here I think it'd lose the timeslot to one of the midseason dramas. (That's assuming Reign isn't locked into a 13-episode "limited series" order. I'm not totally clear on this, but I believe the three additional scripts ordered in early October were in addition to the original 13, so I'm gonna assume this is a "normal" series.) It seems unlikely that Reign returns to the same post-TVD timeslot even if it does get a back nine, and it's probably not ending well if it has to fend for itself somewhere else (maybe on Monday?). I'll say Cancel.

"First Two Weeks" is an ongoing experiment to see how often a new scripted show's fate can be predicted by the very earliest data. Here are the picks and lineups for every show this season.

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