Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Schedules Plus, NBC Wednesday

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.

For many years, the star of NBC Wednesday was the 20-year procedural Law and Order, which was still quite potent at the beginning of the A18-49+ era. But it really fell hard in NBC's first couple post-Friends years (perhaps owing largely to CBS' competing newbie CSI: NY). That's left a void on Wednesday that NBC's never really been able to fill, even a decade later.

NBC Wednesday

8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00 10:30 Avg
2001-02 Ed The West WingLaw and Order 139
86 159 172
2002-03 Ed The West WingLaw and Order 113
80 111 148
2003-04 Ed The West WingLaw and Order 105
74 97 144
2004-05 Hawaii The West WingLaw and Order 86
62 84 112
2005-06 E-Ring The Apprentice: Martha StewartLaw and Order 71
60 61 94
2006-07 30 Rock 20 Good Years The Biggest Loser FallMedium 74
60 538977
2007-08 Deal or No Deal Bionic WomanLife 88
77 105 81
2008-09 Knight Rider LifeLaw and Order 63
59 56 75
2009-10 Mercy Law and Order: SVUThe Jay Leno Show 70
58 95 57
2010-11 Undercovers Law and Order: SVULaw and Order: Los Angeles 81
55 101 87
2011-12 Up All Night Free Agents Harry's LawLaw and Order: SVU 69
91 575181
2012-13 Animal Practice Guys with Kids Law and Order: SVUChicago Fire 77
58 648287
2013-14 Revolution Law and Order: SVUIronside 74
73 95 56
2014-15 The Mysteries of Laura Law and Order: SVUChicago PD 88
72 97 94

Avg 68 92 97 86

2014-15 Update: Thanks to the Empire breakthrough on Fox, NBC stayed in the big four cellar on Wednesday yet again, where they've now been for more than a decade! However, this was actually one of NBC's better efforts on the night over that decade, largely thanks to Chicago PD patching up the 10:00 hour. The Mysteries of Laura was flailing late in the season, but its Plus for the full season nearly matched last year's Revolution, and SVU improbably inched up again. After a pity renewal for Laura, NBC is standing pat here, which means there's no real shot to crawl out of fourth.

Notable midseason replacements:
  • After a year on Friday in 2006-07, Law and Order was held for midseason in 2007-08 and made a somewhat triumphant return to its old Wednesday home during the writers' strike, averaging a 96. (Airing against mostly CSI: NY repeats helped.)
  • Chicago PD (88) debuted in January 2014.
NBC pulled Kidnapped (61) from its 2006-07 sked after three episodes, replacing it with Medium in November. The 8:00 hour that year actually aired just four weeks before 30 Rock was shipped off to Thursday, but there was not an original replacement for that hour until the winter when Friday Night Lights came over.

In 2008-09, the network originally had sophomore Lipstick Jungle on the night (it averaged a 66 in its Wednesday eps, most of which aired after America's Got Talent or Deal or No Deal), but it swapped over to Friday in favor of the above crime drama duo by November.
See here for more explanations/disclaimers about Schedules Plus.


Spot said...

Bionic Woman... why? :(

Spot said...

Schedules Plus really shows how much more valuable some programs became over time. Parenthood is a great example of this: it was a marginal renewal earlier in its life, but as its lead-ins got weaker and after adjusting for the general decline it's demonstrated its resilience.

Spot said...

I agree with that a lot. Same reason why stuff like Castle and Bones are having great + Seasons!

Spot said...

Impressive how this is NBC's strong Tuesday lineup. I still think they need lead-ins and solid performs too much on Thursday, Wednesday and midseason Sundays to use TBL here, but it worked out here decently anyway.

Spot said...

I like to see how much of an improvement Revolution is on the hour. I pray that it holds up in the Spring and scores a renewal. Anyway, I am surprised at how high Chicago Fire's score from last year is, even considering the low rated initial episodes, it really shows their success. I think they are missing a big player at 9pm to lift up the entire night - SVU really feels like a marginal 10pm player that has been asked to do more than it can at an earlier hour due to the lack of options

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