Friday, February 28, 2014
- After suffering through a couple miserable premieres over the past few days, it was finally ABC's turn for some good news as their strong Thursday duo returned from 2.5 months off in very healthy form. Scandal (3.4) was up two tenths from its fall finale and Grey's Anatomy (3.1) saw an even bigger bounce, perhaps benefiting from Rake (0.8) providing even less competition than Glee did back in the fall.
- If ABC was overdue for some good news, NBC was also overdue for some bad. And as usual, the Thursday lineup obliged. Community (1.0), Parks and Recreation (1.0) and Parenthood (1.1) all hit/nearly hit season lows, and Hollywood Game Night (1.2) caught the Thursday disease too in dipping below all its Monday episodes from the winter. (It was only ahead of the Christmas special in December.) Still, at least Game Night was a much better option than the yanked Sean Saves the World and The Michael J. Fox Show...
- CBS' flip of Two and a Half Men (2.5) to 9/8c and The Crazy Ones (1.9) to 9:30 paid immediate dividends, as the former handily outrated TCO's recent 9:00 norm and had a major surge vs. its recent results. And The Crazy Ones didn't even really suffer at 9:30, as its lead-in from Men was only barely weaker than what it had usually gotten from The Millers.
- History's strong drama Vikings (1.3) returned for season two at a number well below last year's inflated series premiere (2.0) but pretty much in line with what it did for the rest of season one.
Thursday, February 27, 2014
The Question, Thursday 2/27/14: Will Grey's Anatomy and Scandal Get the Bad Taste Out of ABC's Mouth?
- As we said yesterday, no series premiere has ever really disappointed with the Modern Family lead-in. But then again, no series premiere had nearly as little going for it as Mixology, and that really showed as the show debuted to a paltry 4.98 million viewers and 1.7 demo rating. It's worth noting that the rejection might be a bit exaggerated because the show got very little help from Modern Family (3.1), which plummeted to a season low on this night. But the show has given itself no real cushion with this start; a typical post-premiere drop from Mixology would put it at/below Super Fun Night levels, and it could easily get uglier than that.
- The hours that surrounded ABC's 9/8c debacle were just as bad, though they switched roles after finals; it was The Middle (1.7) and Suburgatory (1.4) at new season lows, while Nashville (1.3) went up to merely tie its low.
- With CBS adding a second hour of Survivor at 9/8c, that meant no crime dramas to compete with Law and Order: SVU (2.0). As usual, that was a positive for that show. But the real eye-opener was the second half of a cross-over between SVU and Chicago PD (2.2), as the latter grew in the 10/9c hour and hit a series high even with the crime drama competition from Criminal Minds (2.3). Expect the Dick Wolf empire cross-overs to continue at full steam after this result.
- Fox's rough week continued as American Idol (2.7) only barely bounced back from last week's Wednesday episode against the Olympics. It widened the gap with the Survivor premiere somewhat after finals, as that show adjusted down perhaps due to basketball pre-emptions. But Survivor still had a good night, even with last spring's premiere, and it could easily start winning head-to-head fairly soon.
- On cable, FX's The Americans (0.68) returned for season two with no real sign of picking up any heat during the hiatus. However, the 45% drop year-to-year is (hopefully!) a bit exaggerated because the premiere last year was miles ahead of any other result.
Growing Up Fisher
Tuesdays, 9:30/8:30c, NBC
The Amazing Race
Sundays, 8/7c, CBS
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
|Tonight's premiere of Mixology after Modern Family is a classic unstoppable force vs. immovable object situation. The unstoppable force? Mixology is going to fail. I can't come up with any good reason to feel otherwise. It's incompatible with Modern, the cast is all no-names, the reviews are lukewarm to bad, the concept is a weird gimmick, and the promos are dumb. (Now I'll tell you how I really feel!) But there's also this immovable object: every single Modern Family lead-out premiere has done pretty well, even incompatible ones. One of these things will win out, resulting in this line being way off, but I have no idea which one. I'm trying to show some respect for the ratings history, but I
can't help but feel this could do much worse than any of the previous shows. The
incompatible ones in the past at least had good reviews (or Rebel Wilson). |
- The most interesting data points of Tuesday night got a little less interesting when NBC pre-empted original episodes of About a Boy and Growing Up Fisher for repeats of the About a Boy (2.3) and Growing Up Fisher (2.0) pilots.
- As noted last night on The Question thread, I'm declaring the game void due to the last-minute scheduling change. The fact that these episodes actually came pretty close to going over the line anyway makes me feel better about that decision. We can debate how much the move impacted the ratings on this night. Personally I don't think it was a huge deal, since a large percentage of the audience was gonna be first-time viewers who left the TV on after The Voice. But I also don't think it's a stretch at all to say they'd have each gone a tick higher with originals (which is all it would've taken). I watched the first minute of AaB, realized it was the pilot and tuned out, and I can't imagine I was nearly alone in that.
- Sandwiching that hour on NBC was a mediocre Tuesday premiere for The Voice (3.7, down nearly 10% from last spring) and another solid showing for Chicago Fire (1.8).
- ABC also shook things up on Tuesday in a big way, bringing in a special two-hour The Bachelor (2.5) at relatively normal levels. It seems like that should've been a good lead-in for the series premiere of Mind Games (1.1) (and the shows surprisingly had identical 18-49 skews), but the show was dead on arrival anyway. It nestled right between the premieres of ABC's previous two occupants of the slot, Lucky 7 (1.3) and Killer Women (0.9) (the latter had a measly Trophy Wife lead-in).
- CBS, Fox and the CW all had pretty bad nights against the added competition, including new season lows for all three CBS shows: NCIS (2.6), NCIS: Los Angeles (2.3) and Person of Interest (1.7). And Fox's move of Glee (1.2) to Tuesday did not resonate and did not help the 9/8c comedies; New Girl (1.4) and Brooklyn Nine-Nine (1.3) each got back only part of the drops seen in Olympic episodes a couple weeks ago. The CW's The Originals (0.8) also hit a new low.
- Cable notes: TNT brought back its summer Tuesday duo for a four-episode regular season run. Rizzoli and Isles (0.7) was roughly steady with its last premiere within the regular season, while Perception (0.5) hit a series low in its first ever regular season episode. The night's big winner was BET's Being Mary Jane (1.6), which spiked to its best numbers since the two-hour pilot in July.
- On the night after the Winter Olympics, NBC was back in business on Monday with another huge premiere for The Voice (4.7) and the return of The Blacklist (3.1). The singing competition was just a tenth below last spring's premiere (4.8). As for The Blacklist, it was a single tenth behind its last post-Voice episode on December 2. This could be spun as a bit of a disappointment considering that episode had a lead-in almost two points lower, but it's basically the same rating it had back when The Voice was this size in the early fall.
- This came against a full suite of competition on the other networks:
- ABC's The Bachelor (2.5) bounced back to normal after a couple low weeks against the Olympics.
- But Fox's Almost Human (1.6) and The Following (1.6) saw no such relief, each down a tick from Olympic eps last week.
- And while CBS' How I Met Your Mother (3.6) held up quite swimmingly against the return of The Voice, the rest of the comedy gang was down at least half a point from the inflated numbers they rang up in the weeks before the Olympics: 2 Broke Girls (2.5), Mike and Molly (2.1) and Mom (1.9). These were relatively low-end showings for all three.
- And week two of the CW's doomed Star-Crossed (0.3) was down a tenth.
- On cable, the return of TNT's Dallas (0.75) was down 7% from last season's premiere. (Progamming note: I'm going to try adding cable ratings with most of the usual full table numbers. Please check back at night or the next morning on the daily posts for these.)
- NBC's Winter Olympics declines had been fairly disappointing for most of the Games, but it really escalated on the last few nights. Friday (3.6), Saturday (2.8) and Sunday's Closing Ceremony (3.2) were all over 40% behind the 6.5, 4.8 and 5.5 that rounded out Vancouver in 2010, and still well behind the 4.4, 5.1 and 3.8 to round out the 2006 Games. This put the final 2014 average at 18% behind the 2010 average.
- Because of these struggles, the post-Olympics previews of upcoming comedies About a Boy (2.2) on Saturday and Growing Up Fisher (2.0) on Sunday did not get the kind of sampling platforms NBC might have hoped for. But as in 2012, when it was clear Go On had more initial interest than Animal Practice, we can probably also declare an early favorite this year. About a Boy had the edge despite airing 30 minutes later on a much lower-viewed night.
- Sunday was further complicated by a rain delay to NASCAR's Daytona 500 on Fox, pushing it into primetime. The coverage ended up averaging a 2.8 demo rating. That added yet another layer of difficulty for CBS' probably ill-advised premiere of The Amazing Race (1.5), buried to a whooping 40% behind last spring's opener. (It may also adjust noticeably, as CBS had a 13-minute sports overrun of its own.)
- Episode three of The Walking Dead (6.6) was down just two tenths week-to-week and remains ever-so-slightly behind the scorching fall pace (when ep. 3 had a 6.8). And it was a potentially breakout night for HBO's True Detective (1.15), surging by 26% to a series high. (Progamming note: I'm going to try adding cable ratings with most of the usual full table numbers. Please check back at night or the next morning on the daily posts for these.)
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
The Question, Tuesday 2/25/14: Will About a Boy and Growing Up Fisher Grow Up From Their Preview Ratings?
EDIT: NBC called an extremely late audible to re-air the preview episodes tonight, so this game will not count for win/loss records. However, everyone who entered gets the usual 0.1 point for participation, so please check in with the thread before the deadline if you were going to enter.
Monday, February 24, 2014
The Winter Olympics interruption has created an irregularly crowded "premiere week" to kick off the last three months of the broadcast TV season. Today, Best Case/Worst Case returns to preview the eight broadcast shows premiering this week. There's then over a week before the next broadcast premieres on March 9, so we'll be back toward the end of next week to hit the March premieres closer to when they happen.
Sunday, February 23, 2014
Saturday, February 22, 2014
- The Winter Olympics posted three straight 5.0 ratings, down 9%, 9% and 18% from the final Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of 2010. The Thursday rating is most disappointing since it featured figure skating finals, which have produced sizable (or even huge) spikes in years past. The story of Sochi seems to be a dearth of truly compelling storylines to draw the masses into primetime. Most Olympics have certain nights that spike way above the surrounding days, but this one's been pretty consistently blah. Through 14 apples-to-apples days, the 2014 Games are averaging 13% behind 2010 and 9% behind 2006.
- We're finally nearing the end of this entertainment programming vacuum! Here are some tidbits scraped together from what little aired these three days:
Wednesdays, 10/9c, Comedy Central
Wednesdays, 10:30/9:30c and Wednesdays, 10/9c, Comedy Central
Wednesdays, 10:30/9:30c, Comedy Central
Wednesdays, 10:30/9:30c, Comedy Central
Friday, February 21, 2014
Men at Work
Thursdays, 10/9c, TBS