Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Breakdown: CW Friday in 2016-17 (The Vampire Diaries, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Reign and more!)

It's time for a journey through the CW Friday schedule in 2016-17...


2015-16ReignAmerica's Next Top Model Fall21
2016-17The Vampire DiariesCrazy Ex-Girlfriend23 (+13%)
30 (+47%)16 (-21%)

Fall 2016 rounded out the first year after The Vampire Diaries' move to Friday, and it was a big improvement on the network's punt with Reign from a year ago. However, the gains for the night as a whole were diminished as transplanted sophomore Crazy Ex-Girlfriend couldn't match the last CW season of America's Next Top Model.


2015-16The Vampire DiariesThe Originals29
2016-17The Vampire DiariesCrazy Ex-Girlfriend23 (-20%)
30 (-1%)16 (-41%)

Comparing the final days of TVD with the winter episodes from a year ago, the show was able to come close to even in Plus. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend became an even bigger drag, now compared with the year-ago The Originals.


2015-16The Vampire DiariesThe Originals24
2016-17The OriginalsReign21 (-13%)
25 (0%)16 (-28%)

The CW got some silver lining in the spring as The Originals was able to hold very close to what the mothership had done in the spring last year, and actually improve on its own 9:00 performance from the spring. However, Reign took up the 0.2 tradition from CEG and became another huge year-to-year decliner in the 9:00 hour.

Rating the Ratings

The Vampire Diaries*0.30.380.5-19%31hit(CWFri)-4%detail
The Originals*0.20.320.4-18%26hit(CWFri)-3%detail
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend0.20.200.2-32%16flop-19%detail

The Vampire Diaries: The good spin is that it just about broke even in Plus even though some of last season aired on Thursday. The bad spin is that it was still down in Plus despite having a final season announcement and avoiding April/May altogether (months which have historically been devastating for this show). I dunno, I was kinda hoping such an iconic CW institution would go out with a little more life than this. Grade: C+.

The Originals: It had the same kind of trend as TVD, but it was airing only in the deep spring/summer and with no final season announcement. Is it possible the show earned its way to the fifth season with actual first-run ratings? It actually seemed about as strong as the mothership on a True basis, which seems like a pleasant surprise. Grade: B+.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend: From an opportunity cost standpoint, you can certainly make the argument that consistent 0.2's on Friday are much less of a problem for the network than the 0.3's anchoring Monday a year ago. But I can't really give it an actual good grade because we're still parsing out numbers that are so ridiculously low to begin with. It still tanked the timeslot on a year-to-year basis. Grade: C.

Reign: Reign took exactly the same drop as Crazy Ex, but was coming from worse situations last season; it aired on Friday in the fall and Monday in the spring/summer in 2015-16. By premiering after Crazy wrapped, it was also in a tougher situation this season. So we end up with another Grade: C.

The names in this last table link to the shows' War of 18-49 pages. Links with an asterisk(*) have been updated with the new info. Updates to younger shows will come later in the summer.

Here's the now updated Schedules Plus for CW Friday.

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