Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Question, Tuesday 3/17/15: Will An Undateable-Led Comedy Block Be Unwatchable?

ALERT: For the first time in a couple years, it's a double Question day! Another one is going live momentarily, so stay tuned!

Last summer, the premiere of NBC comedy Undateable seemed like such a burn-off that I didn't even bother doing a Question for it. Nearly ten months later, here we are with the show improbably getting a run of episodes after NBC's biggest lead-in. Undateable didn't exactly light up the Nielsens en route to this treatment; its 1.3 premiere on the opening Thursday of the summer was a relatively pleasant surprise, but it quickly shed a lot of that audience when the NBA Finals showed up. Now, it joins new comedy One Big Happy and will try to benefit more from The Voice lead-in than fellow summer rookie The Night Shift has. Will an Undateable-led comedy block be unwatchable? That's The Question for Tuesday, March 17, 2015.

Undateable Last Season + Post-Voice Comedy Launches
1.3/0.90 (Undateable s1 premiere/average, summer 2014)
3.4/2.5 (Go On/The New Normal, 9/11/12) (4.0 The Voice)
2.5/1.9 (About a Boy/Growing Up Fisher, 3/4/14) (3.5 TV)
2.3/1.7 (Marry Me/About a Boy s2, 10/14/14) (3.4 TV)
1.50 (Marry Me fall 2014 average post-Voice)

OK, I thought The Night Shift would set a new series high in its post-Voice premiere and it didn't happen. It would be another new level of ineptitude if Undateable can't beat last summer's 1.3 premiere with a Voice lead-in, only half an hour to bleed that audience away, and repeats on CBS and Fox. But like with The Night Shift, it probably won't be as inflated as other post-Voice launches in part because it isn't a brand new series. One Big Happy is in the unique position of launching as a brand new show after a returnee Voice lead-out, which I think will produce reasonable retention tonight that becomes less reasonable in future weeks. It adds up to an hour with a similar average to The Night Shift's premiere.

Undateable PLUS One Big Happy Over/Under: 3.05.

No entries accepted after 6:00am ET the morning after the date in the headline. If editing your pick, please leave a separate comment. All results based on final ratings rounded to the nearest tenth.

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