Tuesday, May 28, 2019

The Breakdown: ABC Monday in 2018-19 (Dancing with the Stars, The Bachelor, The Good Doctor and more!)

It's time for a journey through the ABC Monday schedule in 2018-19...


2017-18Dancing with the StarsThe Good Doctor143
2018-19Dancing with the StarsThe Good Doctor105 (-27%)
100 (-21%)100 (-21%)113 (-35%)

The Dancing with the Stars collapse was clearly underway in 2017-18, but went into hyperdrive in fall 2018; this season could only manage league average ratings. And its lead-out The Good Doctor suffered even more, dropping off by over a third from its dazzling fall 2017 run.


2017-18The BachelorThe Good Doctor155
2018-19The BachelorThe Good Doctor163 (+5%)
187 (+17%)187 (+17%)116 (-21%)

In the winter, The Bachelor (once the show that was considered filler between DWTS cycles) zoomed up to the highest ratings in the history of the franchise, making up all of last year's drop and then some. Good Doc showed that DWTS was not the only reason for its woes, as it was down over 20% even with a lead-in that improved by double digits, but the two still combined to give ABC its best winter Monday ratings in the era.


2017-18American IdolThe Crossing115
2018-19American IdolThe Fix97 (-16%)
120 (-16%)120 (-16%)51 (-16%)

American Idol had a shorter Monday run this year, and there was no spring Dancing with the Stars, so ABC filled out the late spring with specials and an earlier-premiering The Bachelorette. ABC once again found itself failing to get even half of The Good Doctor's numbers in the spring, this time with crime serial The Fix.

Rating the Ratings

Dancing with the Stars Fall*0.80.951.1-31%100solid-21%detail
The Bachelor*1.51.862.4+7%195big hit+23%detail
American Idol Mon*
The Good Doctor1.01.101.3-38%116solid-29%detail
The Fix0.30.490.751flopdetail

Dancing with the Stars Fall: This season's Plus went even below the depths of the last Dancing with the Stars ratings "crisis" back in 2012-13. It was definitely worth asking whether ABC would let this go on, but they're going to take another whack at it on Monday this fall. Grade: D.

The Bachelor: This was probably the biggest win for a returnee series on broadcast TV this season. We head into 2019-20, for the first time in a very long time, with no obvious scripted bets to achieve the megahit label; maybe this show (and The Masked Singer) now have the strongest chances. Grade: A.

American Idol: The grade is more based on the Sunday ratings, since the Monday run was shorter and didn't include the season finale this year. It was pretty evident throughout the season that Idol was weaker, but it could've been worse than -9% in Plus on Sunday. It took on the same trajectory as the inaugural ABC season, complete with the late April surge that made things look a little better. Idol is now back in the general vicinity of the weakest years on Fox, but since it didn't premiere till after the Oscars it still grades out stronger in True Plus. Grade: C+.

The Good Doctor: Tough one because the year-to-year drops are legitimately rough, but it was still the #2 10:00 show on TV (and had to go head-to-head with the #1 10:00 show, Manifest) and a really impressive DVR grower. I have to be somewhat harsh, because this was a disappointing result, but can't bring myself to the grade that the y2y probably warrants. Grade: C-.

The Fix: This was clearly weaker than The Crossing, which I gave a D in this timeslot last year. I don't think it was as weak as last year's Ten Days in the Valley, so I kinda hate to flunk it out, but this was sort of a light year for megabombs and I don't think there will be a lot of opportunities going forward. Grade: F.

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 ABC Monday.

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