UPDATED: With Christmas fast approaching, viewers stayed largely away from TV last night with all originals posting double-digit declines. The highest-rated program of the night in 18-49 was a rerun of ABC’s hit comedy Modern Family (2.0/6). …
It was a tough night all around. ABC did the best with the 44th Annual Country Music Association Awards (4.7/13 in adults 18-49, 16.5 million viewers overall), winning the night in total viewers and all key demographics by a wide …
Why in the world did NBC put on repeats of Law & Order: SVU and especially fledging Law & Order: Los Angeles last week? After 2 consecutive 20%+ declines, LOLA rebounded big time 2 weeks ago, up 24% in the …
Fox’s coverage of Game 1 of the World Series between the Texas Rangers and the San Francisco Giants (4.7 rating in 18-49) was down 25% from last year’s Phillies/Yankees matchup, but that was to be expected with the most popular baseball team, the Yankees, out this year. The game was on par with ith the opening game of the most recent non-Yankees World Series in 2008 (4.8). Fox won the night in 18-49 and total viewers.
Just like its family-friendly Monday lineup posted week-to-week gains against the monster Monday NFL game on ESPN, the network’s Wednesday comedy block last night logged ratings rises. The Halloween-themed quartet was led by Modern Family (5.1/13 in 18-49, up 9% from last week’s fast national; 13.1 million viewers), which hit a series high in total viewers and matched its series high in 18-49 from earlier this fall. At 8 PM, The Middle (2.8/9, up 8%; 9.4 million) logged its most-watched telecast and its second highest 18-49 delivery ever. Freshman Better with You (2.5/7) had a nice 19% post-full season-pickup bounce to match a series demo high.
There are four freshman series on Wednesday that are still awaiting decision on full-season orders: ABC’s Better with You and The Whole Truth, NBC’s Undercovers and CBS’ The Defenders. None of them made a case for itself one way or another last night, with the first 3 staying flat and The Defenders giving away last week’s solid ratings gains.
Much needed good ratings news for NBC which recently handed back orders – episodic or script – to all of its freshman series still on the air. One of them, Law & Order: Los Angeles (2.4/7 in adults 18-49), was up 26% after 2 consecutive weeks of 20%+ declines. It won the 10 PM hour and improved its retention of Law & Order: SVU to 92% from 83% last week. In fact, the entire NBC Wednesday lineup was up. SVU (2.6/7) was climbed 13%. Undercovers (1.5/5), the only new NBC series to only get script order this week, was flat with the show’s fast national number last week and up 7% vs. the final.
It was UMS’ pickup day at NBC yesterday when the studio’s freshman series The Event, Law & Order: Los Angeles and Outsourced all received back-nine orders. Today is Warner Bros TV’s turn. As expected, the studio and NBC closed deals for full-season orders to freshman drama Chase and fan favorite Chuck, now in its fourth season, which I hear received a super-sized 11 episode pickup. (Digital rights issues held up both deals from being announced at the same time as the other pickups yesterday.) Additionally, NBC and Warner Bros. TV have settled on the number of additional scripts for freshman spy drama Undercovers, 4. NBC primetime chief Angela Bromstad pointed to Chase‘s “potential to grow” and Chuck‘s loyal audience. Indeed, last night Chase delivered a small ratings uptick at 10 PM, while Chuck held steady. Both finished last in the hour among the major networks.
Pickup Time At NBC: ‘Event’, ‘LOLA’ And ‘Outsourced’ Get Full-Season Orders, ‘Chase’ Pending, ‘Undercovers’ Gets More Scripts
All remaining freshman series on NBC got some good news today. Three, The Event, Law & Order: Los Angeles and Outsourced, have been picked up for the rest of the season with back-nine orders. A similar pickup for Chase is said to be pending, while I hear Undercovers is close to receiving an order for additional scripts, said to be in 4-6. All renewed series, The Event, LOLA and Outsourced, hail from sister studio UMS. Chase is from Warner Bros. TV, and deals with outside studios sometime take longer (In this case, it hear the holdup has to do with digital rights). Also close to a full-season order at NBC is the WBTV-produced spy dramedy Chuck, a fan favorite that has gone through its fair share of dramatic last-minute renewals. Its deal is being held up by the same rights issues, with both the Chase and Chuck pickups expected to be finalized tomorrow.
There were big swings at 10 PM on a otherwise pretty uneventful Wednesday night. After declining for 2 consecutive weeks and last Wednesday logging CBS’ lowest-rated original telecast in the hour in 7 years last week, the network’s new light …
God is proving to be a ratings god this week. After a religion-themed Glee dominated Tuesday with a 4.6/13 demo rating, an episode of Modern Family tackling the same subject ruled the demo roost last night with a 4.5/12. It was mostly an uplifting night with all networks able to brag about something except for NBC whose entire lineup was down.
New NBC drama Undercovers continues to fade at 8 PM. It managed a 1.5/4 in 18-49 last night, down a notch from last week. On the same night last year, the now-defunct medical drama Mercy drew a 1.9 in the hour, and NBC averaged a 1.7 in the time slot last season. At 9 PM, Law & Order: SVU (2.5/7) was down 11%. Even worse, new spinoff Law & Order: Los Angeles (2.4/7) was down a steep 25% from its premiere last week. On the positive side, it still won what is shaping up to be a very weak Wednesday 10 PM hour this season and held 96% onto of its SVU lead-in.
While it hasn’t been as quick on the trigger to cancel underperforming new series as its counterparts Fox and ABC, over the past week NBC has been closely monitoring its schedule, which has not performed as well as the network’s executives had hoped. I hear that the intention is to make as fewer scheduling moves as possible, and if things stay stable this week changes might not be implemented. But with the network’s Monday lineup already setting the tone for a 3rd-week declines last night, we could see NBC going for some scheduling tweaks by the end of the week. Most endangered is freshman drama Outlaw, which drew 1.0 in the 18-49 demo and 4.7 million viewers in the Friday 10 PM slot last week.
The new Law & Order spinoff Law & Order: Los Angeles did OK in its debut on what was a down night all around, with all other series except Fox’s Hell’s Kitchen posting double-digit declines from last week. Topping the list …
On the heels of its best series Emmy win, ABC’s comedy Modern Family hit all-time highs in its return for a second season. But also in the ABC column was the most disappointing premiere last night, that of new legal …
Diane Haithman is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.
Is a spy drama with two black actors as the male-female romantic leads a revolution for network television? At TCA today, the producers of NBC’s upcoming Undercovers, which is just such a show — hemmed and hawed in answering the question that really shouldn’t be a question in 2010 but, well, still is.
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