Friday, December 20, 2013

Schedules Plus, NBC Friday

Schedules Plus is another innovative application of the historical ratings statistic A18-49+. I hope this will be the ultimate resource for comparing the evolution of shows, networks and timeslots over time, complete with ratings numbers that make a fair adjustment for the collective decline. Right now this only includes programs aired in the fall. Much more about the process that went into this at the bottom.

NBC was a strong player on Friday nights in the first couple years of the A18-49+ era. But as NBC's depth dried up in the post-Friends years, and as CBS developed Friday dynasties Ghost Whisperer and Numb3rs, Friday became a much lower priority for the network. A recent surprise Friday success called Grimm has gotten the network back to a respectable level on the night.

NBC Friday

8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00 10:30 Avg
2001-02 Providence Dateline FriLaw and Order: SVU 93
74 80 124
2002-03 Providence Dateline FriLaw and Order: SVU 84
63 71 119
2003-04 Dateline Fri Miss MatchThird Watch 72
70 61 83
2004-05 Dateline Fri Third WatchMedical Investigation 69
58 72 77
2005-06 Dateline Fri Three WishesInconceivable 51
55 53 44
2006-07 1 vs. 100 Las VegasLaw and Order 73
73 74 73
2007-08 Deal or No Deal Friday Night LightsLas Vegas 62
65 56 64
2008-09 Deal or No Deal CrusoeLipstick Jungle 41
43 39 40
2009-10 Law and Order Dateline FriThe Jay Leno Show 52
53 55 49
2010-11 School Pride Dateline Fri 46
26 56 56
2011-12 Chuck GrimmDateline Fri 54
42 65 55
2012-13 (repeats) GrimmDateline Fri 56
34 74 61
2013-14 Dateline Fri GrimmDracula 66
67 75 55
2014-15 Dateline Fri GrimmConstantine 64
69 68 55

Avg 57 64 68 63

2014-15 Update: NBC spent a lot more money in the 10/9c hour with Constantine, but they didn't get any benefit relative to last year's Dracula ratings. (The above average also includes some 8:00 Constantine eps.) So Grimm will not be leading into a new drama this time, at least at the start, and NBC fills the third hour with its token "see, we haven't given up on comedy!" hour: an all-live season of Undateable and fellow multi-cam Truth Be Told.

Notable midseason replacements:

  •  NBC's treatment of Friday in 2004-05 remains rather noteworthy, as they axed two of the stronger performers we've seen on the night: Medical Investigation and Law and Order: Trial By Jury (79). TBJ may well have had something to do with the death of Jerry Orbach and not wanting to overexpose the L&O brand, but Medical Investigation seemed worthy of another go by Friday standards.
  • NBC used reality series Who Do You Think You Are? at 8/7c in midseason for 2009-10 (53), 2010-11 (51) and 2011-12 (43).
See here for more explanations/disclaimers about Schedules Plus.


Spot said...

Is Medical Investigation's Plus score masking a big drop-off that happened towards the end of its season? Other than it being an expensive show to produce by Friday standards, that's the only reason I can think of for canceling the show.

I liked TBJ and was sad to see it canceled. I think Jerry Orbach's death was the driving factor because why would NBC bother creating a third spin-off of L&O if there was a fear of overexposure? Besides, SVU picked up a few ticks that season, while CI's drop can be explained by the show having to face Desperate Housewives and the mothership faced similarly-skewing CSI: NY.

Spot said...

I didn't realize how strong their current lineup really is. Good for them. Grimm really is a case study in terms of everyone thinking it was dead and turning into such a big success!

Spot said...

1 vs. 100! Good game show.

I don't even know why they canceled it. Should've kept it going to avoid Deal or No Deal's overexposure.

Spot said...

Very much an underrated classic, well-liked in the game show fandom (and, like DoND, is still going in its native Netherlands if memory serves).

The problem was its second season went awry with a formatting change and the inevitable desperate stunts (including something I'll never understand about US game shows of that era, major mid-episode spoilers - DoND was notorious for it, and, unsurprisingly for a show from the same stable on the same network, 1 vs 100 followed suit). Produced some classic moments, though, and I did like how victorious "mob" members could win money. (The original show picks the next One from the survivors, which kind of works, but doesn't fit with US contestant casting.)

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