Much needed good ratings news for drama series at FX following the so-so numbers for Terriers and Lights Out: the second season premiere of network’s series Justified last night drew 3.5 million viewers, 1.7 million of them in the 18-49 demographic. That is down from the highly-rated series premiere last year, which drew 4.1 million viewers, 1.4 million of them in 18-49, but 43% higher than the series’ first-season average. Justified got help from its strong lead-in, the broadcast premiere of the feature Wanted, which averaged 1.5 million 18-49 viewers, Justified’s biggest lead-in to date, up 49% from Justified’s year-ago series premiere lead-in, Live Free or Die Hard (1.0 million).
The second season premiere of FX’s animated comedy Archer last night drew 1.5 million viewers, 986,000 of them in the adults 18-49 demographic. It was down 16% from the series premiere last year but significantly outperformed its first season average. Interesting footnote: Archer‘s lead-in, a rerun of Two and a Half Men, logged 1 million 18-49 viewers on the day Charlie Sheen made headlines with his hospitalizations following a wild party at his house. That was one of the show’s most watched telecasts on FX ever.
Airing against Archer, MTV’s Jersey Shore finally cooled off, but just a tiny bit. After a series of ratings records, the hit reality series averaged 8.83 million viewers last night, a fraction below the record 8.87 million who tuned in last week. The show kept steady in the 12-34 demo with a 8.8 rating and once again ranked as the second highest-rated program on any network behind Idol.
Meanwhile, CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight sunk to a new low last night, and that’s not only a reference to his choice of Kim and Kourtney Kardashian as guests. Morgan’s interview with the Kardashian sisters drew his smallest audience to date by a wide margin, 498,000. That is well below the 2.1 million he attracted in his debut last Monday and below the 674,000 his predecessor Larry King averaged in 2010. How small was Piers Morgan’s audience? It was …
FX’s latest series Lights Out premiered to mostly disappointing ratings last night. The boxing drama starring Holt McCallany, which had gotten strong reviews, averaged 1.5 million viewers at 10 PM, 793,000 of them in the adults 18-49 demographic. The audience was a bit below the September premiere of the now-defunct FX dramedy Terriers (1.6 million, 659,000 in 18-49), which at the time marked the lowest-rated drama series debut for FX, though Lights Out did better in the demo. Marketing can’t be blamed for misleading viewers this time – there were no dogs, and the posters made it clear this is a boxing series.
It Wasn’t The Marketing: FX President John Landgraf On Why ‘Terriers’ Didn’t Work FX has made it official – there will be no Season 2 of Terriers. The Shawn Ryan/Ted Griffin drama, which last week wrapped its freshman run, ranked as the lowest rated first-year drama series on FX ever with an average of 970,000 viewers tuning in for the original telecasts, 509,000 of them in the adults 18-49 demographic, corresponding to a .49 demo rating.
FX’s drama Terriers ended its disappointing freshman run last night with 784,000 total viewers tuning in for the season finale, 405,000 of them in the adults 18-49 demographic. That was the third most-watched episode of the season and the fourth highest-rated in adults 18-49 despite the fact that the finale of the Shawn Ryan/Ted Griffin series had the show’s highest-rated lead to-date, the broadcast premiere of Tropic Thunder, which posted 1.1 million A18-49 in the 9:30-10PM half-hour leading to Terriers.
The 90-minute third season finale of FX’s Sons of Anarchy delivered 3.6 million total viewers last night, 2.4 million of them in the adults 18-49 demographic. It was the drama series’ second highest rated telecast of the season behind the season premiere, up 5% in the demo from last week. The biker series benefited from having its strongest lead-in this season, the broadcast premiere of Eagle Eye (1.4 million in 18-49). SOA was the most-watched program in basic cable in total viewers and 18-49.
How often does a scripted series hit an all-time ratings high in Season 6? Well, FX’s comedy It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia just did it with its sixth season premiere last night. Also breaking series records was the network’s comedy The League, which opened its second season behind Sunny. At 10 PM, Sunny delivered 1.83 million adults 18-49 and 1.46 million adults 18-34, up 3% from the previous series demo highs posted by last season’s premiere. In the male demographics, the gains from the Season 5 premiere were bigger, 16% in Men 18-34 (1.01 million) and 11% in Men 18-49 (1.24 million), both all-time series highs. The total viewership, 2.21 million, was was off by 1% in Live+same day but is expected to be a series best when Live+7 data is factored in.
Season two premiere of The League at 10:30 PM was up 76% in Adults 18-49 (1.38 million), 63% in Adults 18-34 (994,000) and 72% in total viewers (1.71 million) from its debut last year, with series highs across the board. It retained 77% of the Sunny in Philadelphia’s lead-in in total viewers and 76% in 18-49.
That’s certainly great news for FX, which also is enjoying ratings success with Sons of Anarchy but its new PI drama Terriers has been a ratings disappointment. After its low-rated premiere last week that drew a 0.5 rating in 18-49, Episode 2 on Wednesday fell even further to 0.4.
A day after FX’s Sons of Anarchy returned with 4.13 million viewers, the network’s new drama Terriers debuted with 1.6 million total viewers last night, 659,000 of them in the adults 18-49 demographic. This marks the lowest-rated drama series debut for FX, which was surprising given the show’s pedigree (it hails from The Shield creator Shawn Ryan and Ocean’s Eleven writer Ted Griffin, mostly positive reviews and extensive marketing campaign (though I have to admit I didn’t care much for the snarling dog, the title of the show was confusing enough). FX is not giving up on the new series though. To help Terriers get traction, the network will rebroadcast the premiere episode after Sons of Anarchy next Tuesday.
The third season premiere of FX’s Sons of Anarchy last night drew 4.13 million million viewers, 2.81 million of them in the adults 18-49 demographic. That is a strong start though not a record for the biker drama and was down 4% in total viewers and 7% from last year’s second season premiere. In fact, last night’s Season 3 debut ranks as the third most-watched episode of Sons, behind the season 2 premiere and season 2 finale. But it also ranks as the highest-rated scripted basic cable telecast this year in 18-49.
Another third season opener, that of A&E’s unscripted series Hoarders, broke records for the network on Labor Day. The two back-to-back episodes (3.7 million viewers, 2.0 million adults 18-49; 3.8 million, 2.1 million 18-49) became the two most-watched episodes in A&E series history across all key demographics and ranked as the highest-rated season debut for any original series on A&E.
Airing against the season premiere of Sons, USA Network’s freshman Covert Affairs (5.4 million, 2.1 million 18-49) was up from last week, 2% in total viewers and 6% in 18-49. Its lead-in, the Season 2 summer finale of White Collar (4.7 million, 1.8 million 18-49) drew its largest audience since the winter debut.
SUBSCRIBE TO DEADLINE NEWS
- Senior Director, Communications
CBS Interactive, San Francisco, California
- Media Team Manager
Bridgewater Associates, Westport, Connecticut
- Marketing Director
CBS Interactive, Los Angeles, California
- Dean Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business
Belmont University, Nashville, Tennessee
Scott Rudin Productions, New York, New York
- See More Jobs >>>
- Senior Director, Communications
By The Numbers - FILMS/TV/CABLE
News PollLoading ...
‘The Originals’ Season 2 Trailer