Friday, September 10, 2021

The War of 18-49, Dynasty

A Weak Start on Wednesday

While Riverdale was having its big sophomore bounce in the Wednesday 8/7c hour in fall 2017, its lead-out was another soapy drama in the new remake of Dynasty. But the show proved utterly incapable of capitalizing on the momentum in the earlier hour, premiering with a 0.33 demo which was barely 40% of Riverdale's 0.8 season premiere. And sub-50% retention was the norm going forward; as Riverdale dropped to 0.6's and 0.5's, Dynasty settled with consistent low-to-mid 0.2's. To the CW's credit, they didn't waste a lot of time trying to generate first-run ratings for the show; it was buried on Friday beginning in spring 2018, and there it would stay for years to come. The initial Friday eps were not down that much from the later Wednesday episodes, usually borderline 0.1-0.2's.

A Long Friday Run

In the Friday 8/7c hour with a local programming lead-in, season two of Dynasty hit a lot more 0.2's and never got lower than a mid-0.1. But the network wanted to try a little harder in fall 2019, moving sophomore Charmed to the night, so Dynasty headed for 9/8c and took a big tumble. It never hit a 0.2 all season, but also never got that close to a 0.0 (going as low as 0.07 one time in March).

Thanks to COVID delays, season four didn't return until exactly 52 weeks after the season three finale, and this time avoiding 0.0 proved impossible; most of the season aired in the summer and oscillated between 0.03 and 0.07, with at least a half dozen episodes hitting the dreaded Blutarsky. It hasn't been pretty for Dynasty in the first-run ratings, but the show keeps getting renewed because of its streaming deal. In fact, there's never even been any indication that it's in trouble, as it has reliably been among the network's early batch of renewals. Season five is coming, and expect still more low-priority treatment on the linear network.

Adults 18-49 info by season:

12017-18Wed 9:00, Fri 8:
22018-19Friday 8:000.15-17%0.10.2detailC-
32019-20Friday 9:000.10-38%0.10.1detailC-
4Summer 20210.05-51%0.00.1detailD+

Historical-adjusted ratings by season:

4Summer 20217flop0.04-37%4.65117.764.65


The War of 18-49 chronicles the ratings history of veteran primetime series. For more, see the Index.

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