Monday, July 16, 2018

The Breakdown: CW Wednesday in 2017-18 (Riverdale, Dynasty, Life Sentence and more!)




It's time for a journey through the CW Wednesday schedule in 2017-18...


fall

Year8:008:309:009:30Avg
2016-17ArrowFrequency43
6124
2017-18RiverdaleDynasty36 (-16%)
52 (-14%)20 (-19%)
VsAvg-7%-44%-22%
Rank13/1716/1715/17

Riverdale hadn't really even seemed like a mortal lock renewal late in season one, but after a summer of exposure with the younger demos on Netflix, it exploded out of the box with a 0.8 premiere in season two. It took 15 episodes to fall below 0.5 (its highest rating in season one) for the first time. As pleasant a surprise as this was, it still never matched last year's Arrow ratings, and it couldn't help its newbie lead-out Dynasty; it was even farther behind failed Frequency than Riverdale was behind Arrow.

winter

Year8:008:309:009:30Avg
2016-17ArrowThe 10040
4833
2017-18RiverdaleDynasty30 (-25%)
43 (-9%)17 (-48%)
VsAvg+0%-40%-16%
Rank10/1714/1711/17

Dynasty became an even bigger eyesore in the winter months, when it was compared against an actual decent ratings performer, and eventually headed to Friday to play out the rest of its full season. Riverdale narrowly edged within single digits of Arrow here but fell back to a double-digit drop in the spring.

spring

Year8:008:309:009:30Avg
2016-17ArrowThe 10034
4324
2017-18RiverdaleThe Originals34 (+2%)
37 (-14%)32 (+30%)
VsAvg-24%+2%-14%
Rank15/179/1711/17

The 9/8c slot in the spring was split evenly between not-pictured bomb Life Sentence (which actually hit a 0.1 in its last two Wednesday episodes) and a really solid performance from the early part of the final season of The Originals (which hit 0.4 for the first three weeks).

Rating the Ratings

NameLoAvgHiy2yPlusLabelPlusy2yResults
Riverdale0.30.490.8+30%45hit(CW)+45%detail
Dynasty0.10.190.317flopdetail
Life Sentence0.10.130.212flopdetail
The Originals0.20.320.4+0%29marginal(CW)+12%detail


Riverdale: This is one of those shows that did something incredible, but stuck around for long enough and dropped enough in the ratings that it became a bit taken for granted. But the huge leaps from season one to season two in the final averages don't lie. It was not coming from an impressive starting point, but this is still one crazy sophomore bounce. Grade: A.

Dynasty: It bombed just a teeeeny bit less than Valor and beat it out for the back nine and renewal. And with fellow CBS returnees Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and Jane the Virgin ending next season, the CW will be looking for every reason to give Dynasty another renewal. Can it make some kind of mark on Netflix like Riverdale did? Grade: D.

Life Sentence: Kinda hate to put it behind Dynasty and Valor since they all did terribly; if it had come from the right studio, maybe it would've had a shot. But it was the first one to cross the 0.1 threshold on a weeknight, and it's had some Friday episodes that just barely eked out an un-rounded 0.100. Grade: F.

The Originals: (Average through July 11. Three episodes are still to air, and the update to the War page will come after those are in the books.) It looked great with some 0.4's in the early weeks but has tapered off to some low 0.3's and at least one high 0.2 in the summer airings. It's had a good showing on Wednesday, though not much Truly different from what it did in on Friday last year. It does have the benefit of essentially confirming that the season four performance was impressive. As hard as this show fell in seasons two and three, it held up pretty well in the later years. Grade: B.

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 Wednesday.

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