The Big 4 are starting their upfronts in NYC today but the 2013-2014 TV season is still going through its final paces with finales and specials. It was ABC who held the finale cards among the networks last night. With a chilly blockbuster surprise at the very very end of Once Upon A Time (2.2/7), the fairy tale drama wrapped its third season. The two-hour finale bopped up 5% from last week to match its best result among adults 18-49 since April 6. The last episode of the season was basically steady with its previous finale, with just a 4% slip from that one-hour broadcast on May 12, 2013. Once Upon A Time also has a tendency to rise a tenth in the final numbers, so expect an adjustment later. No spoilers except to say it was a scorched Earth policy of a night and some new beginnings on Revenge (1.5/4) as the high-end soap also ended its third cycle. The one-hour finale rose 15% in the key demo from its May 4 episode and series low tie. However, compared with its two-hour Season 2 finale on May 12, 2013, Revenge took an 11% downward turn. ABC started the night with America’s Funniest Home Videos (1.5/6), which saw a 6% dip from last week. Add it all up and ABC won the night for the third Sunday in a row in the demo with a 1.8/6 rating.
On NBC, it was back to the future with the Night 1 premiere of NBC’s four-hour miniseries Rosemary’s Baby (1.1/3), which made a soft debut and last in its 9-11 PM time slot. The adaptation of the 1967 bestselling suspense novel by Ira Levin that was made into a career-making movie by Roman Polanski in 1968 is the first of the network’s slate of several miniseries and event series announced last summer. With Avatar and Star Trek star Zoe Saldana in the mother role made famous by Mia Farrow, the setting changed and more gallons of blood than the original pic, the two-hour broadcast last night was up 10% from last week’s time-slot average — not exactly stellar for such promoted programming.
It’s apples to avocados, but Rosemary’s ratings were down 76% from what NBC’s last special event programming — the live Sound Of Music – drew in the demo on December 5 last year — a Thursday. Last night’s broadcast pulled in just 3.67 million total viewers, a touch ahead of the 3.47 million that Fox’s science docu series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey (1.2/3) got in the 9 PM slot and way behind what CBS’ dramas pulled in. Rosemary’s Baby concludes May 15. With overrun coverage of The Players Championship golf, NBC’s Sunday started 1 hour and 19 minutes late on the East Coast. Running from 8:19-9 PM, a two-hour Dateline (0.8/3) was down a hard 27% from its May 4 show. Though uninterrupted in other time zones, preliminary ratings for the newsmag are obviously likely to change in the final numbers.
The No. 1 network in terms of total viewers (8.28 million), CBS saw no falls Sunday night. 60 Minutes (1.1.4) was up 10% from its May 4 show, The Amazing Race (1.7/5) was even, The Good Wife (1.2/4) bopped up 9% while The Mentalist (1.2/4) was even with last week to again tie a series low.
On Fox, ratings gravity worked as its animation block and Cosmos were all down. Bob’s Burgers (0.9/4) and American Dad (1.1/4) tumbled 18% and 15%, respectively. Coming off it high-voltage May 4 LEGO-themed episode, The Simpsons (1.6/6) fell 20%, while Family Guy (2.1/7) dipped 5%. With a 1.2/3 result, Cosmos dimmed a solar-sized 25% from last week.
Deadline's Dominic Patten - tip him here.