CBS Wins Thursday Overnights; ABC Poised for Victory Among Adults 18-49

Friday, December 4, 2009
Prime-Time Metered Market Thursday Ratings:

CBS Wins; ABC the Network to Beat Among Adults 18-49

Ratings Box:
What’s Hot/What’s Not

On the Air This Weekend:
Prime-Time Programming Options 

TV Tidbits:
Notes of Interest
TV Trivia Time:

A thirtysomething Gig


CBS Wins; ABC the Network to Beat Among Adults 18-49

Thursday 12/03/09


CBS   6.5/11
ABC 5.3/ 9
Fox    4.6/ 7
NBC 3.5/ 6
CW    1.1/ 2

-Percent Change From the Year-Ago Evening (Thursday, December 4, 2008):

Fox: +59, CBS: -23, NBC: -24, CW: -35, ABC: -38

-Yesterday’s Winners:

Survivor: Samoa (CBS), Bones (Fox), CSI R (CBS), The Mentalist R (CBS)

-Expected Dominance Among Adults 18-49:
Private Practice (ABC)
-Honorable Mention:
The Office (NBC)
Fringe (Fox)
-Yesterday’s Losers:

Community (NBC), Parks and Recreation (NBC), The Jay Leno Show (NBC)

-Ratings Breakdown:

Despite CSI and The Mentalist airing in repeats, CBS finished first in the overnights on this first Thursday in December, with a 23 percent advantage over second-place ABC. Keep in mind that Grey’s Anatomy was pre-empted for an extra hour of spin-off Private Practice. Next was vastly improved Fox, followed by NBC and a night of repeats on The CW.


CBS’ Survivor: Samoa, which is beginning to feel like an awfully long season, won the 8 p.m. hour with a 6.5 rating/10 share in the overnights at 8 p.m. One year earlier, the season set in Gabon was slightly higher at a 7.0/11 (on Dec. 4, 2008). Second in the hour was Fox’s always reliable Bones (5.5/ 9), followed by ABC’s Flashforward (4.5/ 7), NBC comedies Community (3.1/ 5) and Parks and Recreation (2.9/ 5), and a repeat of The Vampire Diaries on The CW (1.2/ 2). Last night’s episode of Flashfoward is the last original episode we will see until March 4.


A repeat of CBS’ CSI won the 9 p.m. hour in the overnights, with a 6.3/10. But the first-half of a two-hour edition of ABC’s Private Practice (#2: 5.6/ 9) is a shoo-in for dominance among adults 18-49. Also airing in the time period was NBC’s The Office (4.4/ 7) and 30 Rock (3.7/ 6), Fox’s Fringe (3.8/ 6), and a repeat of Supernatural on The CW (1.0/ 2). Worth noting for The Office, which always scores among adults 18-49, was overnight growth out of should-be-canceled Parks and Recreation of 52 percent.


Top-rated 10 p.m. overnight honors went to CBS’ The Mentalist, with a 6.9/12. But the second half of ABC’s expanded Private Practice (#2: 6.0/10) will again win the hour among adults 18-49. Overall, the two-hour installment of Private Practice averaged a 5.8/10 from 9-11 p.m., with the half-hour breakdown as follows:

Private Practice (ABC)
9:00 p.m.: 5.6/ 9 (#2)
9:30 p.m.: 5.6/ 9 (#2)
10:00 p.m.: 5.9/10 (#2)
10:30 p.m.: 6.0/10 (#2)

Third at 10 p.m., of course, was NBC’s The Jay Leno Show at a 3.4/ 6. 

Source: Nielsen Media Research data (R = repeat)

Ratings Box:

-Jesse Ventura Scores on truTV:

The series-premiere of Conspiracy Theory with Jesse Ventura averaged 1.63 million viewers in the Wednesday 10 p.m. hour on Dec. 2 — the biggest launch to-date of any series on truTV. Conspiracy Theory also scored truTV’s biggest deliveries of men 18-34 (206,000), men 18-49 (494,000), men 25-54 (532,000), and adults 25-54 (812,000) for a 2009 series launch, building by as much as 83 percent among men 25-54 from the year-ago time period average. 


-Record-Breaking Steven Seagal Lawman on A&E:

Also in the Wednesday 10 p.m. hour was the premiere of A&E series Steven Segal Lawman, which averaged 3.5 million total viewers and 2.0 million adults 18-49 and adults 25-54 with back-to-back episodes. Comparably, this is now the most-watched original series launch on A&E in the history of the cable net. 

-Syndicated Talk Show Update:

Based on season to-date through Nov. 22, 2009, what follows are the national rating results for all syndicated talk shows (with percent change versus the comparable year-ago period in parentheses). Worth nothing is the significant gains for CBS Television Distribution’s The Doctors; growth for CBS’ Oprah, Warner Bros.’ The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and NBC Universal’s Maury and Jerry Springer; and a second-place finish among key women 18-49 for Maury. Sony Pictures Television’s Dr. Oz, of course, is the strongest new talk show since Dr. Phil seven year earlier, while already renewed freshman entry The Wendy Williams Show is on the map at a 1.2 rating in households. As for Dr. Phil, the yearly losses are considerable. 


Oprah (CBS Television Distribution): 5.5 rating (+10), Dr. Phil (CBS): 2.9 (-12), Dr. Oz (Sony Pictures Television): 2.6, Live with Regis & Kelly (Disney-ABC): 2.4 (- 4), Ellen DeGeneres (Warner Bros.): 2.2 (+10), Maury (NBC Universal): 2.1 (+17), The Doctors (CBS): 1.9 (+46), Rachael Ray (CBS): 1.7 (+ 6), Jerry Springer (NBCU): 1.3 (+30), Wendy Williams (Debmar-Mercury): 1.2, Steve Wilkos (NBCU): 1.1 (+22), Bonnie Hunt (Warner Bros.): 0.8 (no change), Martha (NBCU): 0.6 (-14)

Women 25-54:

Oprah (CBS): 3.7 (+12), Dr. Phil (CBS): 1.6 (-20), Dr. Oz (Sony Pictures Television): 1.6, Maury (NBCU): 1.5 (+25), Ellen DeGeneres (NBCU): 1.5 (+15), Live with Regis & Kelly (Disney-ABC): 1.3 (- 7), Rachael Ray (CBS): 1.0 (- 9), Wendy Williams (Debmar-Mercury): 1.0, The Doctors (CBS): 0.9 (+29), Jerry Springer (NBCU) and Steve Wilkos (NBCU): 0.8 (+33 each), Bonnie Hunt (Warner Bros.): 0.5 (no change), Martha (NBCU): 0.3 (-40)

Women 18-49:

Oprah (CBS) 2.9 (+ 7), Maury (NBCU): 1.6 (+14), Ellen DeGeneres (Warner Bros.): 1.3 (+18), Dr. Phil (CBS): 1.3 (-19), Dr. Oz (Sony Pictures Television): 1.3, Live with Regis & Kelly (Disney-ABC): 1.0 (- 9), Wendy Williams (Debmar-Mercury): 1.0, Rachael Ray (CBS): 0.9 (no change), The Doctors (CBS), Jerry Springer (NBCU) and Steve Wilkos (NBCU): 0.8 (+33 each), Bonnie Hunt (Warner Bros.): 0.4 (no change), Martha (NBCU): 0.3 (-25)

Source: Nielsen Media Research data

On the Air This Weekend:
Prime-Time Programming Options


 8:00 p.m. Supernanny

 9:00 p.m. Ugly Betty

10:00 p.m. 20/20

 8:00 p.m. Ghost Whisperer

 9:00 p.m. Medium

10:00 p.m. Numbers

 8:00 p.m. Law & Order

 9:00 p.m. Dateline

10:00 p.m. The Jay Leno Show

 8:00 p.m. Dollhouse (return)

 9:00 p.m. Dollhouse


 8:00 p.m. Smallville

 9:30 p.m. Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer (R)

Saturday 12/05/09
 8:00 p.m. Dr. Pepper Big 12 Championship Game    

 8:00 p.m. Medium (R)

 9:00 p.m. CSI: NY (R)

10:00 p.m. 48 Hours Mystery  

 8:00 p.m. Movie: The Incredibles (R)

10:30 p.m. The Office (R)

 8:00 p.m. Cops

 9:00 p.m. America’s Most Wanted

Sunday 12/06/09

 7:00 p.m. America’s Funniest Home Videos

 8:00 p.m. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
 9:00 p.m. Desperate Housewives

10:00 p.m. Brothers & Sisters  


 7:00 p.m. 60 Minutes

 8:00 p.m. The Amazing Race (season finale)

 9:00 p.m. Cold Case (new time)

10:00 p.m.  NCIS: Los Angeles (repeat)


 7:00 p.m. Football Night in America

 8:00 p.m. Sunday Night Football: New England at Miami


 7:00 p.m. Football overrun

 7:30 p.m. The OT

 8:00 p.m. Allstate BCS Selection Show

 8:30 p.m. The Simpsons (R)

 9:00 p.m. Family Guy (R)

 9:30 p.m. American Idol (R)


TV Tidbits:

Notes of Interest


-Freshman Series Scorecard:

Here is an updated status of the primetime freshman class of 2009-10 by network, in order of airing.


-V (Tuesday 8:00 p.m. ET): on hiatus until Tuesday, March 30. 

-The Forgotten (Tuesday 10 p.m. ET): five additional episodes ordered, bringing total to 18.

-Hank (Wednesday 8:00 p.m. ET): canceled and replaced to-date with repeats of Modern Family. 

-The Middle (Wednesday 8:30 p.m. ET): full season renewal despite ongoing lackluster performance.

-Modern Family (Wednesday 9:00 p.m. ET): full season renewal, bona fide young adult hit.

-Cougar Family (Wednesday 9:30 p.m. ET): full season renewal, but weakening retention out of Modern Family

-Eastwick (Wednesday 10:00 p.m. ET): canceled. Ugly Betty steps into the time period on Jan. 6.

-FlashForward (Thursday 8:00 p.m. ET): full season renewal, but will not return with originals until Tuesday, March 4.


-Accidentally on Purpose (Monday 8:30 p.m. ET): five additional episodes ordered, bringing total to 18.

-NCIS: Los Angeles (Tuesday 9:00 p.m. ET): full season renewal, biggest new hit of the season.

-The Good Wife (Tuesday 10:00 p.m. ET): full season renewal; good retention out of NCIS: Los Angeles, but older skewing.

-Three Rivers (Sunday 9:00 p.m.): removed from the schedule after 8 episodes, but 13 will be produced.


-Trauma (Monday 9:00 p.m. ET): three additional episodes ordered (despite initially announcing it was canceled), bringing the total order to 16. 

-The Jay Leno Show (Monday to Friday 10:00 p.m. ET): third place finish on most nights, but NBC is likely to leave it be all season. 

-Mercy (Wednesday 8:00 p.m.): full season renewal.

-Community (Thursday 8:00 p.m. ET): full season renewal despite ongoing lackluster performance.


-Glee (Wednesday 9:00 p.m. ET): full season renewal, season one DVD coming out on Dec. 29.

-Brothers (Sunday 7:00 p.m. ET): the cancellation clock is ticking.

-The Cleveland Show (Sunday 8:30 p.m. ET): renewed for two full seasons, builds regularly from The Simpsons lead-in.

The CW

-Melrose Place (Tuesday 9:00 p.m. ET): Not even Heather Locklear can save this revival.

-The Beautiful Life (Wednesday 9:00 p.m. ET): first cancellation of the season.

-The Vampire Diaries (Thursday 8:00 p.m. ET): full season renewal; solid performer among young females.

Executive Shuffle

It is with great pleasure to announce the appointment of Vicky Gregorian, one of the nicest people I know, as Senior Vice President, Domestic Syndication, Litton Entertainment. Most recently Executive Vice President, National Sales Manager at Program Partners and Executive Consultant for Trifecta Entertainment and Media, Vicky will be handling the Litton library, including the welcome return of Karen Francis-Mills in the re-titled Judge Karen’s Court. 

TV Trivia Time:

A thirtysomething Gig


What did Melissa Steadman do for a living on drama thirtysomething?


a)      artist

b)      boutique owner

c)      photographer

d)      teacher

e)      waitress


The answer to yesterday’s question…


Which one of the following short-lived dramas featured the youngest Osbourne, Kelly?


a)      Birds of Prey

b)      Fashion House

c)      Life As We Know It

d)      The Mountain

e)      Threat Matrix


Is: c) Life As We Know It, which aired on ABC in the fall of 2004 and featured Kelly as colorful Deborah Tynan.


-Current kudos goes to:
Barbara Berman, Gerry Bixenspan, Kimay Bloch, Jordan Breslow, Barbara Bloomfield, Vanessa Coates, Chanel Cohen, Larry Collins, Tom Condosta, Audrey Davis, John Ferlazzo, Arleen Fong, Robert Gori, Joslyn Hansen, Shannon Herlihy, Brad Hight, Heidi Hoffmeister, Bob Ingersoll, David Jackino, Synda Kollman, Mark Krause, Steven Kurtzer, Michael Lehman, Patty Lynch, Michael McCray, Debbie Mirr, Stephen Narissi, Michael Natale, Aaron Paquette, Greg Phelan, Amy Preisendefer, Francine Purcell, Gordon Purcell, Julie Rasmussen, Colleen Roth, David Ruckman, Maxine Schulman, Michelle Stanton, Andrew Stearn, Meredith Wayne, Ted Zawislak