Monday, July 18, 2022

The Breakdown: CW Wednesday in 2021-22 (Legends of Tomorrow, Batwoman, Kung Fu and more!)




It's time for a journey through the CW Wednesday schedule in 2021-22...


fall

Year8:008:309:009:30Avg
2020-21DevilsCoroner13
1411
2021-22Legends of TomorrowBatwoman16 (+25%)
16 (+12%)16 (+41%)

VsAvg-69%-51%-62%
Rank20/2120/2120/21

After a disastrous run together on Sunday late in the 2020-21 season, the CW's Legends of Tomorrow and Batwoman got a bit of a reprieve by returning quickly and on a better night. They were improved from their Sunday summer ratings to be sure, but still didn't exactly throttle the year-ago fall filler.

winter

Year8:008:309:009:30Avg
2020-21RiverdaleNancy Drew18
2214
2021-22Legends of TomorrowBatwoman19 (+2%)
19 (-14%)18 (+26%)

VsAvg-52%-31%-44%
Rank20/2114/2118/21

The shows perked up even a bit more in the winter ratings, each breaking over a 0.10 a few times after never doing so in the fall. However, they still only managed to match last year's disappointing Riverdale/Nancy Drew combo.

spring

Year8:008:309:009:30Avg
2020-21Kung FuNancy Drew19
2612
2021-22The FlashKung Fu19 (+0%)
23 (-12%)15 (+28%)

VsAvg-48%-47%-48%
Rank20/2117/2119/21

The spring brought another "even year-to-year but disappointing" lineup, as the fast fading The Flash made the move to the night and couldn't even match last year's Kung Fu, while Kung Fu itself slumped in the 9/8c hour.

Rating the Ratings

NameLoAvgHiy2yPlusLabelPlusy2yResults
Legends of Tomorrow*0.10.090.1+7%17flop+35%detail
Batwoman0.10.090.1-26%17flop-7%detail
The Flash*0.10.140.2-35%27marginal(CW)-18%detail
Kung Fu0.10.080.1-41%16flop-26%detail

Legends of Tomorrow: Well, I gave this show *only* a D+ last year when it was more than -50% in Plus, so that gives me some room to be a bit harsher here when it gains 35% back. Not only is the night easier, but it aired far earlier in the season, so something along these lines was probably bound to happen. The more apt comparison is to what it was doing in its previous weeknight seasons. In those comparisons, Legends is clearly much weaker, but it still hasn't fallen as hard as The Flash. (It's down more like 30-40% over the last couple years, while The Flash is at least 50%.) So I will be a bit kinder here than I was with The Flash, but it was still at a weak enough level to get cancelled on a now-harsher CW. Grade: C+.

Batwoman: Not as showy trend-wise as Legends, as it went from building on Legends on Sunday to merely matching it on Wednesday. This is likely in large part because the Sunday local lead-ins are much weaker, and you could probably still make the argument that getting 100%ish retention at 9/8c makes it "Truly" stronger than Legends. But again, that wasn't enough of an argument for the netlet to save it. Grade: C.

The Flash: Already updated.

Kung Fu: Airing after The Flash is not really much of an honor anymore; in fact, you could probably argue it's a meaningful downgrade vs. last year's local programming. This was still not an impressive hold for the sophomore season, but it managed to survive while the fall/winter veterans did not. 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.

Previous Breakdowns for CW Wednesday: 2015-16 | 2016-17 | 2017-18 | 2018-19 | 2019-20 | 2020-21

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

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