These are the type of double-digit ratings gains network executives love to see their series hit in the season finales. Except when ratings don’t matter since the shows have already been canceled. All three recently axed Monday freshman series — NBC’s The Event and Law & Order: Los Angeles and Fox’s The Chicago Code — posted big week-to-week increases last night, which marked the final bow for The Event and Chicago Code and the last in-season episode of LOLA, which will finish its run over the next few weeks. The Event (1.5/4) was up 15% for its highest 18-49 rating since November. LOLA (1.4/5) was up 27%, and The Chicago Code (2.0/5) was up 11%. Meanwhile, returning series were down vs. their previous finales. Fox’s House (3.3/10) was down 23% from its season ender last May. The hourlong performance finale of ABC’s Dancing With the Stars (4.6/13, 22.2 million viewers) held up better, down 6% from the fall performance finale. Versus last spring’s cycle, the Monday Dancing closer was actually up, by 15% in 18-49 and 14% in total viewers, to draw the franchise’s largest audience for a spring performance finale. The premiere of The Bachelorette (2.8/7) was flat with last season’s debut. ABC easily won the night in 18-49 (3.4/9) and total viewers (13.6 million). CBS aired all repeats.
It was another sad Monday ratings performance for NBC, which hit another season low on the night with all original programming. Chuck (1.3/4) was even with last week, tying its series low. But it also delivered NBC’s highest demo rating last night. The Event (1.1/3) was down 13% from its last original two weeks ago for a series low. And the relaunch of Law & Order: Los Angeles continues to sputter. In its second week since the series’ return last Monday, the Law & Order spinoff drew a 1.1/3, down a steep 27% from the two-hour midseason premiere last week. Such an underwhelming performance bodes well for David E. Kelley’s Harry’s Law, which did better in the slot earlier this midseason.
ABC’s Dancing With the Stars performance show (3.9/11) was down 13% from last week to rank as the lowest-rated spring performance telecast ever for the venerable reality franchise. In its special airing after Dancing, a new Cougar Town (2.3/6) was down 15% from its last original Feb. 2. Proving that comedy series do better in a block, even with a weaker lead-in, that last original followed a Modern Family repeat. The first of a slew of specials about the upcoming Royal Wedding, ABC News: William & Catherine: A Modern Fairytale, averaged a 1.7/4 at 10 PM.