On the Air This Weekend:
Prime-Time Programming Options
A Sweathog Wedding
CBS Wins; Fox Expected to Dominate Among Adults 18-49
CBS 5.0/ 9
Fox 4.1/ 7
Fox 4.1/ 7
CSI R (CBS), So You Think You Can Dance (Fox), The Mentalist R (CBS)
-Yesterday’s Losers (Excluding Repeats):
CBS dominated the overnights on this third Thursday in July on the strength of repeats of CSI (#1: 5.4 rating/10 share) and The Mentalist (#1: 6.2/11 — highest rated show of the evening) from 9-11 p.m. Week two of Big Brother 11 tied for first at 8 p.m., but a 3.4/ 6 in the metered markets is nothing spectacular. As for the show itself, I personally think this is one of the best editions of the reality/competition I have ever seen. And conniving Ronnie could be the best player since former champion Will Kirby. SPOILER ALERT: While I would have preferred to see Chima depart, Ronnie flipped and Braden was sent packing. Excluding Jeff, am I the only one who can’t stand the Athletes?
Second place Fox (which is expected to win the evening among adults 18-49) opened with a repeat of underrated Bones (#1t: 3.4/ 6), followed by the live So You Think You Can Dance Results Show at a second-place 4.8/ 8. Although So You Think You Can Dance will, no doubt, finish the evening first among adults 18-49, year-to-year erosion is a result of a) unmemorable contestants, and b) too much cheerleading by the judges this season. Come on now…are the contestants really that good this summer?
Elsewhere, news special J.K. Rowling: A Year in the Life kicked-off the night for ABC with an uneventful 3.4/ 6, which tied for first with CBS’ Big Brother and Fox’s Bones encore. That led into repeats of Grey’s Anatomy (#4: 2.1/ 4) and Private Practice (#3: 2.0/ 3) from 9-11 p.m., which just do not play well in non-originals.
Next was NBC with its combination of a repeat of 30 Rock (#4: 2.4/ 5), two repeats of The Office (#4: avg. 2.4/ 4 from 8:30-9:30 p.m.), another encore of 30 Rock (#4: 2.2/ 4) and Canadian drama The Listener (#2: 2.7/ 5), which will be concluding its non-impressive primetime run next Thursday. As reported yesterday, the remaining five episodes of The Listener are expected to stream on nbc.com (and repeats of Law & Order will step into the time period on July 30).
The CW capped off the night with repeats of Smallville (#5: 1.0/ 2) and Supernatural (#5: 0.9/ 2).
As a reminder, here is what you will be seeing on Thursday next fall. CBS’ veteran Survivor (now themed Samoa) is still likely to dominate at 8 p.m., but ABC’s Flash Forward is a contender among key adults 18-49. And so is upcoming NBC sitcom Community, which will move to 8 p.m. six weeks into the new season, and CW drama The Vampire Diaries, which could be described as Buffy, the Vampire Slayer meets Charmed. Buzz is already building online for The Vampire Diaries. The battle for dominance at 9 p.m. should be shared between two deteriorating favorites, CBS’ CSI and Grey’s Anatomy on ABC, but there is every reason to believe the Eye net’s relocated The Mentalist will rule the 10 p.m. hour, potentially squashing the competing Private Practice on ABC and The Jay Leno Show on NBC.
Fox, meanwhile, is expected to generate some interest with Bones and relocated Fringe, while Emmy darlings The Office and 30 Rock will likely remain core favorites on NBC. As for the Peacock net’s sophomore Parks and Recreation, Amy Poehler would be wise to keep her ties to Saturday Night Live alive.
8:00 p.m. SNL Weekend Update / Community (new)
9:30 p.m. 30 Rock (Community debuts here)
Source: Nielsen Media Research data
The second season-premiere of TNT drama Leverage opened on Wednesday, July 15 with a healthy 2.72 million households and 3.89 million viewers at 9 p.m. Comparably, that built from the season one average by 20 percent in households and 24 percent in total viewers. The debut of lead-out Dark Blue was amply sampled with 2.72 million households and 3.54 million viewers at 10 p.m. Compared to the year-ago evening, growth was a significant 104 percent in households and 129 percent in viewers.
Based on final national ratings for the week of July 6, CBS’ The Late Show with David Letterman (3.68 million) beat NBC’s competing The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien (2.82 million) by 860,000 viewers. Comparably, that was its largest margin of victory against a week of original episodes of The Tonight Show since the week of Feb. 25, 2000 (when Letterman returned from heart surgery). Demographically, both talkers tied among adults 25-54 (1.2 rating/5 share), while Conan’s advantage in adults 18-49 (1.1/ 5 vs. 0.8/ 4) was 37 percent this week.
None of the broadcast networks are tearing the ratings house down, so to speak, this summer. But seven weeks into the non-traditional season (May 25 – July 12, 2009), CBS has increased by two percent year-to-year in total viewers, winning its fourth consecutive week in the category. Elsewhere, erosion is running rampant with the biggest loser, Fox, down by margins of 20 to 26 percent in the five surveyed categories. Part of Fox’s losses, of course, comes from deteriorating So You Think You Can Dance.
Here the results for the Big 4 networks in households, total viewers and the three key demos compared to one year earlier. Ratings for The CW and MyNetworkTV were not available.
CBS: 4.7 rating/9 share (no change), NBC: 3.5/ 6 (-10), ABC: 3.2/ 6 (-14), Fox: 3.1/ 6 (-21)
CBS: 6.98 million (+ 2), Fox: 6.27 (-20), NBC: 6.16 (-12), ABC: 5.73 (-12)
Fox: 1.8 rating/6 share (-25), ABC: 1.7/ 5 (-15), NBC: 1.6/ 5 (-16), CBS: 1.5/ 5 (- 6)
CBS: 2.1/ 6 (- 5), NBC: 2.0/ 6 (-13), Fox: 2.0/ 6 (-20), ABC: 1.9/ 6 (-17)
Fox: 1.7/ 6 (-26), ABC: 1.4/ 5 (-18), NBC: 1.2/ 4 (-20), CBS: 0.9/ 3 (-10)
On the Air This Weekend:
Prime-Time Programming Options
8:00 p.m. Surviving Suburbia
8:30 p.m. The Goode Family
9:00 p.m. According to Jim (R)
9:30 p.m. According to Jim (R)
8:00 p.m. Ghost Whisperer (R)
9:00 p.m. Flashpoint (R)
8:00 p.m. The Chopping Block
9:00 p.m. Dateline (two hours)
8:00 p.m. Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?
9:00 p.m. Mental
8:00 p.m. Privileged (R)
9:00 p.m. Everybody Hates Chris (R)
9:30 p.m. The Game (R)
10:00 p.m. Dirty Sexy Money (return)
8:00 p.m. The Unit (R)
9:00 p.m. Numbers (R)
8:00 p.m. Kings
9:00 p.m. Law & Order: Criminal Intent (R)
8:00 p.m. Cops
9:00 p.m. America’s Most Wanted
10:00 p.m. Brothers & Sisters (R)
7:00 p.m. 60 Minutes
8:00 p.m. Big Brother
9:00 p.m. Cold Case (R)
7:00 p.m. Great American Road Trip (R)
8:00 p.m. Merlin
9:00 p.m. Miniseries: Meteor (part two)
7:00 p.m. ‘Til Death (R)
7:30 p.m. American Dad (R)
8:00 p.m. The Simpsons (R)
8:30 p.m. King of the Hill (R)
9:00 p.m. Family Guy (R)
9:30 p.m. The Simpsons (R)
7:00 p.m. Jericho (R)
8:00 p.m. Sunday Movie: The Thomas Crowne Affair (R)
Notes of Interest
As a recap, here is the number of nominations received by network for The 61st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, which will be handed out live on CBS on Sunday, Sept. 20.
Comedy Central: 13
Commercials (no network affiliation): 8
Discovery Channel: 7
History, Lifetime and NBC.com: 5 each
Cartoon Network, Disney Channel, Nickelodeon and Travel Channel: 3 each
A&E and Hallmark Channel: 2 each
ABC.com, Animal Planet, Comedy Central.com, ESPN, Fox Movie Channel, MTV, NGC, Spike TV, Syfy.com and syndication: 1 each
And here are the shows with more than five nominations each:
22: 30 Rock (NBC)
17: Grey Gardens (HBO)
16: Mad Men (AMC)
14: In the Storm (HBO)
13: Saturday Night Live (NBC)
11: Generation Kill (HBO) and Little Dorritt (HBO)
10: The 81st Annual Academy Awards (ABC), Dancing With the Stars (ABC) and Taking Chance (HBO)
9: The Office (NBC)
8: American Idol (Fox)
7: The Amazing Race (CBS) and Damages (FX)
6: Flight of the Conchords (HBO), 24 (Fox) and Weeds (Showtime)
TV Trivia Time:
A Sweathog Wedding
What was the name of the girl Horshak married towards the end of sitcom Welcome Back, Kotter?
The answer to yesterday’s trivia question…
Which TV character was known for saying “when donkey’s fly!” when she did not agree with you?
Is: a) Florence Jean Castleberry, who said more that “kiss my grits!” on Alice. All together now…
I used to be sad, I used to be shy
Funniest thing, the saddest part is I never knew why…
Kickin’ myself for nothin’ was my favorite sport
I had to take off, start enjoyin’ ’cause life’s too short
There’s a new girl in town, ’cause I’m feelin’ good.
Get a smile, get a song, for the neighborhood
Things are great when you stand on your own two feet
and this girl’s here to say
with some luck and love life’s gonna be
-Current kudos goes to:
Mark Amato, Becky Beaty, Matthew Berriman, Gerry Bixenspan, Larry Collins (3x), Paula Cone, Reid Davis, Holly Escobar, Jim Forkan, Julie Friedlander, Jerry Gibbons, Maureen Goldman, Geoffrey Gordon, Sharron Harmening, Michelle Harrington, Bob Ingersoll, Greg Janover, Mary Kalnin, Irene Kirschner, Synda Kollman, Valerie Langan, Charmaine Leary, Patty Lynch, Debbie Mirr, Michael Murphy, Tony Naldrett, Stephen Narissi, Greg Phelan, Ron Salmon, Hakima Shah, Sonya Shaw, David Shearer, Jim Smith, Julie Stowell, Ronnie Tallant, Carol Teichman, Don Webb, Larry Weinstock