Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Question, Sunday 10/5/14: Will Mulaney Be a Ratings Laugher?


Tonight, Fox fills out its Sunday mixture of animated anchors and live-action comedies with the premiere of Mulaney. SNL writer John Mulaney's project ended up on Fox after failing to get a pickup at NBC. But the positive buzz seems to have died in the transition, with the show reportedly watered down from what made it promising in its early development. To boot, it doesn't seem like a great match with the raunchier Fox animated comedies. Will Mulaney be a ratings laugher? That's The Question for Sunday, October 5, 2014.


Family Guy and American Dad! Last Season
2.6/2.34/2.0 (Family Guy premiere/avg/finale last season)
2.1/2.01 (American Dad! 9:30 premiere/avg last season)
4.5 (one-hour Family Guy last week)

This seemed simpler before Family Guy went and hung a 4.5 demo for its crossover with The Simpsons last week. I could be way off here if Family Guy actually stays well into the 3's this week. But with the double-whammy of no crossover and no afternoon NFL lead-in, I expect Family Guy to come most of the way back to normalcy, and Mulaney to start out at least a bit worse than American Dad! would. (Then even more worse beyond week one.)

Mulaney Over/Under: 1.75.

No entries accepted after 6:00am ET the morning after the date in the headline. If editing your pick, please leave a separate comment.

33 comments:

Spot said...

Tough line. I am expecting a Mixology type of retention (even if B99's 67% retention out of an overachieving Simpsons makes this harder than expected) but it's hard to know where Family Guy will end up. I am sure it will come back to reality but I wouldn't be surprised to see it being a smooth comeback rather than all at once. So I give it a chance at high 2s/ low 3s today. Still, a very optimistic 3.0 would only result in a 1.6 using the Mixology retention as a guide.

That would be Under.

Spot said...

Under

Tough line again. I'm not very confident because of that big Family Guy premiere last week. I know it was one-time event, but Mulaney could have nice lead-in today.

Anyway, here we have laugh track multi-cam paired with Family Guy. Not a good idea, because Mulaney is bound to skew much older than Family Guy, whose mostly young audience I expect to reject Mulaney in large numbers (it will be extremely interesting to see quarter-hours for this premiere). Where from does Fox expect viewers to come, then? Male audience to DVR football or The Walking Dead in favor of this? Yeah, sure. Audience of female oriented counter-programming on other channels to switch to Mulaney in the middle of the hour? Not even on a weekday where audience would expect some multi-cam to actually air somewhere. Things look bleak for this Seinfeld wannabe.

Why Fox scheduled things like this, then? Last season their new live action comedies rated bad (Brooklyn Nine-Nine), very bad (Dads) or awful (Enlisted). Their W18-34 friendly Tuesday comedy block collapsed. Their development cycle wasn't good, to put it mildly. I conclude it from Fox seriously considering renewing Dads for this timeslot (with Mulaney pushed to midseason). Probably it came down to them knowing Dads was awful in 18-34 demos, while for Mulaney at least there's slim hope it won't be. Fox was in dire straits, that's the reason their schedule is such a patchwork. Not that I feel sorry for them, their pains are entirely self-inflicted.

All in all, Mulaney is bound to have terrible retention. And, as Family Guy isn't really a ratings monster, then something having about 50% retention out of it, is bound to be short-lived. But premiere is always something different - I wouldn't be shocked if it goes over Spot's line.

Spot said...

I'm going to say Under, but it's tough because Family Guy may have been rejuvenated by the crossover and with half hour comedies, retention even for the first 15 minutes can skew the numbers high in the premiere episode. I'd be much more comfortable on under if the line was a 1.95 but I guess that wouldn't be as much fun, right? Regardless, I think it will end up being slaughtered in the coming weeks by competition. Fox needs younger men to watch Mulaney and younger men will be watching The Walking Dead.

Spot said...

And this is where never paying attention to the Sunday Fox shows finally comes back to bite me...

Um, under?

Spot said...

Safest way to go with FOX at this point is UNDER

Spot said...

Under. FG returns to its mid/low 2s, Mulaney drops a full point from there.

Spot said...

Under. Family Guy won't be near strong like last week and I don't think Mulaney has much potential to at least have a decent retention out of FG.

Spot said...

Under. Family Guy won't be near strong as last week and I don't think Mulaney has much potential to at least have a decent retention out of FG.

Spot said...

I want to be optimistic, but unless FG stays above 3, I cant see Mulaney staying above 1.7. Under

Spot said...

Even if Family Guy drops 40%, it'll only need 65% to beat the line. And Walking Dead isn't there yet. I say it'll do 1.8-2.0 in premiere

Spot said...

Under.

Spot said...

oof, oof, off. Nooo idea. Under?

Spot said...

With the names attached to this new sitcom -- Lorne Michaels, Martin Short, Nasim Pedrad -- you'd think this is a sure bet for a LOL comedy. Not so, based on its premiere. Disappointing.

Under.

Spot said...

Over

Spot said...

Under

Spot said...

over

Spot said...

Under

Spot said...

Under

Spot said...

Under, even though I'm kinda afraid Family Guy will stay over a 3 and boost Mulaney.

Spot said...

over i guess

Spot said...

Under

Spot said...

Over

Spot said...

Over

Spot said...

Under.

Spot said...

I saw a late NFL game on my Fox affiliate (and a compressed recap of the 10-hour United SportsCar Championship race from Saturday afternoon/evening). I suppose that must just be a local thing.

Given that, I don't see Fox being a real factor, and certainly not Mulaney. Under.

Spot said...

I'll say over. The show doesn't have Walking Dead taking away male viewers and is behind Fox's most successful show...that's kind of sad?

Spot said...

Fox really needs a strong performance from Mulaney tonight, and hope that it carries through its first season. Otherwise, its veteran live-action sitcom candidates for 2015-2016 are Brooklyn Nine-Nine and (eep!) New Girl.

Under

Spot said...

A big swath of the country got that Denver-Arizona game. http://506sports.com/

It was also shown in the territories of Pittsburgh, Jacksonville, Cleveland, Dallas, Houston, Tennessee, Baltimore, and Indianapolis, because the no-compete rule prohibited them from getting an early game.

The west coast, including Seattle, Hawaii, and Alaska also got the late game because of the time zone difference.

Spot said...

UNDER

Spot said...

I don't know. I flipped a coin, Under.

Spot said...

Interestingly, there'll be a nationwide (probably?) 9:30am ET broadcast on FOX later this season - a Falcons/Lions game in London that will take place at 1:30pm local time. That'll be interesting to watch.

Don't see enough of the eastern US getting a game to be influencing Simpsons much, and then it's straightforward - FOX = UNDER.

Spot said...

Under 1.5 (and then way under in the weeks ahead)

Spot said...

under.

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