NBC’s The Jay Leno Show Kicks-Off Tonight

Monday, September 14, 2009
Prime-Time Ratings:
Weekend Highlights
Ratings Box:
What’s Hot/What’s Not
On the Air Tonight:
Prime-Time Programming Options
TV Tidbits:
Notes of Interest

Executive Shuffle


TV Trivia Time:

A Dancing Fool


Prime-Time Ratings:

Weekend Highlights

Friday 9/11/09

Note: The following results are based on the fast affiliate ratings (Live Plus Same Day data).  



CBS 3.9/ 7
Fox    2.9/ 5
ABC 2.5/ 5
CW    0.9/ 2

-Total Viewers:

NBC: 6.07 million, CBS: 4.23, Fox: 3.76, ABC: 3.55, CW: 1.40

-Adults 18-49:

NBC: 1.4 rating/5 share, Fox: 1.0/ 3, ABC and CBS: 0.9/ 3 each, CW: 0.5/ 2  


Note: Any prior rating results are based on the final nationals. Since the level of DVR penetration has increased from 20 percent at this same point last year to approximately 28 percent at present, the overall results may be negatively impacted.


-Friday’s Winners:

Dateline (NBC)

-Disappointing (excluding repeats):

20/20 (ABC)

-Ratings Breakdown:

NBC finished first on this second Friday in September, with a first-place finish in both total viewers and adults 18-49 care of a repeat of Southland (Viewers: #3, 3.55 million; A18-49: #3t, 0.9 rating/3 share at 8 p.m.) and a two-hour edition of Dateline (Viewers: #1, 7.32 million; A18-49: 1.7/ 6 from 9-11 p.m.). Here is the half-hour breakdown for Dateline:


Dateline (NBC)

 9:00 p.m. – Viewers: 6.22 million (#1), A18-49: 1.4/ 5 (#1)

 9:30 p.m. – Viewers: 7.39 million (#1), A18-49: 1.7/ 5 (#1)

10:00 p.m. – Viewers: 7.75 million (#1), A18-49: 1.8/ 6 (#1)

10:30 p.m. – Viewers: 7.93 million (#1), A18-49: 1.9/ 6 (#1)


CBS traveled the repeat route with its regularly scheduled combination of Ghost Whisperer (Viewers: #2, 4.53 million; A18-49: #1t, 1.1/ 4), Medium (Viewers: #2, 4.00 million; A18-49: #3, 0.9/ 3) and Numbers (Viewers: #3, 4.16 million; A18-49: #3, 0.9/ 3). ABC aired repeats of Supernanny (Viewers: #4, 3.32 million; A18-49: #3, 0.9/ 3) and Ugly Betty (Viewers: #4, 2.58 million; A18-49: #4, 0.6/ 2) from 8-10 p.m., followed by the season-premiere of veteran 20/20 at a disappointing 5.02 million viewers (#2) and a 1.4/ 4 among adults 18-49 (#2) at 10 p.m. Considering LaToya Jackson was interviewed by Barbara Walters (and CBS’ competing Numbers was a repeat), even the growth for 20/20 out of the Ugly Betty encore is not all that impressive. 


Fox opened the evening with older-skewing game show Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? (Viewers: #1, 4.64 million; A18-49: #1t, 1.1/ 4), which airs in a half-hour format in first-run syndication this fall and did not impress given the lack of original competition, followed by a repeat of Glee (Viewers: #3, 2.98 million; A18-49: #2, 1.0/ 3). And The CW capped off the evening with repeats of the pilot episodes of The Vampire Diaries (Viewers: #5, 2.04 million; A18-49: #5, 0.7/ 3) and Melrose Place (Viewers: #5, 1.02 million; A18-49: #5, 0.4/ 1). Over 2-million viewers for The Vampire Diaries encore is a positive worth noting. Like most serialized dramas, Melrose Place just does not play well in repeats. 


At press time, there is only one week left until the start of the new season. Take a look again at what is coming up on Friday:

 8:00 p.m. Supernanny (new time)
 9:00 p.m. Ugly Betty (new day and time)

10:00 p.m. 20/20

 8:00 p.m. Ghost Whisperer

 9:00 p.m. Medium (new network, new day and time)

10:00 p.m. Numbr3s

 8:00 p.m. Law & Order (new day and time)

 9:00 p.m. Dateline / Southland (new day and time, effective Oct. 23)

10:00 p.m. The Jay Leno Show (new)

 8:00 p.m. Brothers (new)
 8:30 p.m. ‘Til Death (return)
 9:00 p.m. Dollhouse
The CW
 8:00 p.m. Smallville (new day)
 9:00 p.m. America’s Next Top Model (R)

Source: Nielsen Media Research data (R = repeat)

Saturday 9/12/09

Note: The following results are based on the fast affiliate ratings (Live Plus Same Day data).  



ABC 3.4/ 6
Fox    2.9/ 5

CBS   1.7/ 3

ABC: 5.32 million, NBC: 5.05, Fox: 4.93, CBS: 2.49
-Adults 18-49:

ABC and Fox: 1.6 rating/5 share each, NBC: 1.1/ 4, CBS: 0.7/ 2


Note: Any prior rating results are based on the final nationals. Since the level of DVR penetration has increased from 20 percent at this same point last year to approximately 28 percent at present, the overall results may be negatively impacted.


-Saturday’s Winners:

Nothing…there is rarely anything positive to say about Saturday other than the ongoing consistency of Fox’s Cops and America’s Most Wanted, which opened their new seasons. 


-Saturday’s Losers (excluding repeats):

U.S. Open: Women’s Final 2009 (CBS)


-Ratings Breakdown:

ABC was the most-watched network on this sports populated Saturday, beating second-place NBC by 270,000 viewers. In the competitive No. 3 spot was Fox, followed by distant CBS, which is approximate due to the late start for The U.S. Open Semi-Finals. ABC and Fox tried for first among adults 18-49, each with a modest 1.6 rating/5 share in the demo. Next was NBC followed by lackluster CBS.


The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series on ABC averaged 5.32 million viewers with an aforementioned 1.6/ 5 among adults 18-49 from 8-11 p.m. Here is the half-hour breakdown:


NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (ABC)

 8:00 p.m. – Viewers: 5.63 million (#1), A18-49: 1.7/ 6 (#1)

 8:30 p.m. – Viewers: 5.38 million (#1), A18-49: 1.6/ 5 (#1)

 9:00 p.m. – Viewers: 5.34 million (#2), A18-49: 1.6/ 5 (#1)

 9:30 p.m. – Viewers: 5.36 million (#3), A18-49: 1.6/ 5 (#2)

10:00 p.m. – Viewers: 5.17 million (#2), A18-49: 1.6/ 5 (#1)

10:30 p.m. – Viewers: 5.03 million (#2), A18-49: 1.6/ 5 (#1)


CBS opened the evening with a repeat Ghost Whisperer, while the US Open started at a non-confirmed later time. Here were CBS’ results by half-hour, with the official program populating the 9 p.m. hour yet to be confirmed. 

CBS Saturday

 8:00 p.m. – Viewers: 1.93 million (#4), A18-49: 0.5/ 2 (#4)

 8:30 p.m. – Viewers: 1.89 million (#4), A18-49: 0.5/ 2 (#4)

 9:00 p.m. – Viewers: 1.81 million (#4), A18-49: 0.4/ 1 (#4)

 9:30 p.m. – Viewers: 2.17 million (#4), A18-49: 0.6/ 2 (#4)

10:00 p.m. – Viewers: 3.28 million (#3), A18-49: 0.9/ 3 (#3)

10:30 p.m. – Viewers: 3.86 million (#3), A18-49: 1.1/ 3 (#3)


Elsewhere, Fox opened up new seasons of the perennial combination of Cops and America’s Most Wanted and they remained durable (albeit non-spectacular) Saturday performers. Take a look:

Saturday (Fox)

8:00 p.m. – Cops (season premiere)

Viewers: 3.83 million (#2), A18-49: 1.2/ 4 (#3)

8:30 p.m. – Cops

Viewers: 5.12 million (#2), A18-49: 1.7/ 6 (#1)


9:00 p.m. – America’s Most Wanted (season premiere)

Viewers: 5.39 million (#1), A18-49: 1.8/ 6 (#1)


NBC capped off the evening with repeats of Law & Order: Criminal Intent (Viewers: #3, 3.99 million; A18-49: #3, 0.8/ 3), Law & Order (Viewers: #3, 5.31 million; A18-49: #3, 1.2/ 4) and Law & Order: SVU (Viewers: #1, 5.86 million; A18-49: #2, 1.4/ 5). 


Source: Nielsen Media Research data (R = repeat)

Sunday 9/13/09


Fox     5.9/10
CBS    4.3/ 7
ABC   2.7/ 4
CW     0.8/ 1

-Percent Change From the Comparable Year-Ago Period (Sunday, Sept. 14, 2008):

Fox: +55, NBC: +20, ABC: -32, CBS: -39, CW: -53

Note: The fast affiliate results for Sunday will be posted at PIFeedback.com by 12 p.m. ET. Go to the website, click on Ratings Box (the first category), then Last Night’s Results, and Sunday, September 13, 2009.   


-Yesterday’s Winners:

Sunday Night Football: Chicago at Green Bay (NBC), Football Overrun (Fox), The OT (Fox)


-Should Have Concluded Several Years Ago:

King of the Hill (Fox)


-Yesterday’s Losers (excluding repeats):

Shark Tank (ABC), There Goes the Neighborhood (CBS), Defying Gravity (ABC)


-Ratings Breakdown:

Chicago at Green Bay on Sunday Night Football led NBC to an easy Sunday overnight victory, with an estimated 13.3 rating/21 share in primetime from 8:30-11 p.m. Don’t forget: results for any live sporting event are always approximate. Here is the half-hour breakdown:


Sunday Night Football (NBC) – Chicago at Green Bay

 8:30 p.m.: 13.0/21 (#1)
 9:00 p.m.: 13.6/21 (#1)
 9:30 p.m.: 14.2/22 (#1)
10:00 p.m.: 12.6/20 (#1)
10:30 p.m.: 13.0/21 (#1)

Earlier in the evening on NBC was pre-game Football Night in America, which was estimated as follows in the overnights by half-hour.

Football Night in America (NBC)
7:00 p.m.: 2.6/ 5 (#4)
7:30 p.m.: 3.7/ 6 (#4)
8:00 p.m.: 9.2/15 (#1)

Fox also benefited from football, with an estimated half-hour football overrun at a very dominant 12.8/23 in the overnights at 7 p.m. That led into post-game The OT at an also first-place 9.4/14 at 7:30 p.m.


In series-finale news, two episodes of Fox’s veteran King of the Hill averaged a 3.8/ 6 in the 8 p.m. hour, with the half-hour breakdown as follows:

King of the Hill (Fox)
8:00 p.m.: 4.1/ 7 (#3)
8:30 p.m.: 3.5/ 5 (#3) – series-finale

Needless to say, this is a show should have probably exited three or four years earlier. Also on Fox were repeats of Family Guy (#3: 3.1/ 5) and American Dad (#3: 2.7/ 4) from 9-10 p.m.


Moving to CBS, all results are estimated due to an approximate half-hour US Open Tennis primetime overrun. With that in mind, the tennis overrun opened the evening with a second-place 4.7/ 8 in the overnights at 7 p.m. Next was granddaddy 60 Minutes (#2, 7.8/13 from 7:30-8:30 p.m.), followed by the next-to-last episode of Big Brother this season (#2: 3.8/ 6 from 8:30-9:30 p.m.), and the expanded season (or series) finale of There Goes the Neighborhood (2.2/ 3 from 9:30-11 p.m.). Take a look at the results by half-hour for this flop reality/competition (overnights for the 11 p.m. half-hour was not available).

There Goes the Neighborhood (CBS)

 9:30 p.m.: 2.2/ 3 (#4)

10:00 p.m.: 2.3/ 4 (#2)
10:30 p.m.: 2.1/ 3 (#2)

Big Brother concludes the season with an expanded two-hour episode beginning at 9 p.m. tomorrow. 


ABC had an eventful Sunday with its combination of repeats of America’s Funniest Home Videos (#4: 3.6/ 6) and Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (#4: 3.0/ 5) from 7-9 p.m., and original episodes of Shark Tank (#4: 2.8/ 4) and the embarrassing Defying Gravity (#3: 1.5/ 3) from 9-11 p.m. Don’t forget that Shark Tank is scheduled in the Tuesday 8 p.m. hour this fall until the remake of sci-fi driven V moves in on Nov. 3. 


Capping off this second Sunday in September was the second half of theatrical Benny & Joon on The CW (#5: 0.8/ 2), followed by another repeat telecast of the pilot episodes of The Vampire Diaries (#5: 1.1/ 2) and Melrose Place (#5: 0.6/ 2) from 9-11 p.m.


At press time, there are only seven days left until the start of the 2009-10 season. Take a look at what lies ahead. 


 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

 9:00 p.m. Three Rivers (new)

10:00 p.m. Cold Case (new time)

 7:00 p.m. Football Pre Game

 8:20 p.m. Football Night in America

 7:00 p.m. The OT

 8:00 p.m. The Simpsons

 8:30 p.m. The Cleveland Show (new)

 9:00 p.m. Family Guy

 9:30 p.m. American Dad

Source: Nielsen Media Research data

Ratings Box:

What’s Hot/What’s Not
-Record Debut for Vampire Diaries on The CW:

Highly touted CW drama The Vampire Diaries was amply sampled, with 4.91 million viewers in the Thursday, 8 p.m. hour on Sept. 10, according to the Live Plus Same Day ratings. Comparably, this was the largest audience for any CW series-premiere, topping 90210 from one year earlier. Vampire Diaries also lifted The CW to a record performance in the time period in women 18-34 (3.1 rating/10 share) and women 18-49 (2.8/ 8); and best in total viewers, adults 18-34 (2.2/ 8) and adults 18-49 (2.1/ 6) since Oct. 2007. Among target female teens (3.5/14), Vampire Diaries was the No. 1 show of the evening in all of television. In addition, Vampire Diaries finished second in the hour (behind football on NBC) in women 18-34 and adults 18-34, building from year-ago opening levels for former occupant Smallville by 507,000 viewers and as much as 121 percent among women 18-34. 

Source: Nielsen Media Research data

On the Air Tonight:
Prime-Time Programming Options

Monday 9/14/09
 8:00 p.m. Movie: Dreamgirls
 8:00 p.m. How I Met Your Mother (R)
 8:30 p.m. How I Met Your Mother (R)
 9:00 p.m. Two and a Half Men (R)
 9:30 p.m. The Big Bang Theory (R)

10:00 p.m. CSI: Miami (R)

 8:00 p.m. America’s Got Talent (two hours)

10:00 p.m. The Jay Leno Show (premiere)

 8:00 p.m. House (R, two hours)
 8:00 p.m. One Tree Hill (season premiere)
 9:00 p.m. Gossip Girl (season premiere)
 8:00 p.m. The Twilight Zone (R)
 8:30 p.m. The Twilight Zone (R)

 9:00 p.m. Magic’s Biggest Secrets Finally Revealed (R)

New Program Descriptions
The Jay Leno Show (NBC)
-The Premise:

The former The Tonight Show host heads to prime-time in a nightly hour featuring comedy skits, big stunts, well-known segments like “Headlines,” “Jaywalking” and “99-Cent Store,” and music (the latter two times per week).

-Lead-in: Trauma

-Competition: Castle (ABC), CSI: Miami (CBS)

-Lead-in: The Biggest Loser

-Competition: The Forgotten (ABC), The Good Wife (CBS)

-Lead-in: Law & Order: SVU

-Competition: Eastwick (ABC), CSI: NY (CBS)


-Lead-in: Community (for six weeks), then 30 Rock

-Competition: Private Practice (ABC), The Mentalist (CBS)

-Lead-in: Southland

-Competition: 20/20 (ABC), Numbers (CBS)

-The Scoop:

The show, according to Jay Leno at the recent Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour:


“The set is interesting. It’s a lot bigger than our old set. There’s no desk. We might use a desk in the last 15 minutes because I’m trying to think of some better way to do headlines. But it won’t be a talk show, and it won’t be a variety show with wigs and hats on and things of that nature. We have a number of correspondents. And we have some featured people. I spoke to Brian Williams from The Nightly News and I said, “Would you be willing to do something on a regular basis, contributing perhaps things like stories that weren’t good enough for The Nightly News, this type of stuff?” And he said yes, he would love to do it. So he is going to, hopefully, hone his comedy chops on our show. He’ll be a featured guest. Then we’re going to introduce a lot of new correspondents. The idea of having comedians coming on, doing their little five-minute stand-up, and sitting down, there’s nothing wrong with that. But to give it a bit more punch, I’m hoping we can make some stars here. We’ve found a number of people, like D.L. Hughley, who will report on politics in Washington. D.C.”

-The Reality:

Five hours of Jay Leno in primetime is both unprecedented and extremely dangerous. This is five hours per week (or 23 percent of the schedule), after all. And, yes, it could be a major catastrophe. But since NBC is in a desperate situation and the viewers already now Jay’s shtick, this could be a risk worth taking. While the success of the show will, of course, fall heavily on the caliber of guests (President Obama…are you available again?), airing out of The Biggest Loser makes Tuesday the best bet. And because The Tonight Show with Jay Leno always skewed older than CBS’ competing The Late Show with David Letterman, chances are there will be a lot of grey in the mix on NBC next season. That said, since when does NBC care about viewers over 50? Isn’t this the network that initially shunned them? 


Expect significant initial sampling for The Jay Leno Show tonight.


-Chance of Survival for The Jay Leno Show (Based on a scale of 1-1 to 10-1):


TV Tidbits:

Notes of Interest


-Announcing EmmyTVLegends.org From Mochila:

The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation has launched a free web video portal called EmmyTVLegends.org, which features more than 600 rare conversations with TV legends like Mary Tyler Moore, Alan Alda, Carroll O’Connor, Jean Stapleton, Ron Howard, Henry Winkler, Michael J. Fox, I Love Lucy writers Bob Carroll, Jr. and Madelyn Pugh Davis, Sharon Gless, Sherman Hemsley, and news great Walter Cronkite. Designed by Mochila, the premium content syndication technology platform and network, viewers have complete access to view the endless hours of content in both short and long-form segments. Speaking as a true fan of TV, one visit and you will be addicted. For more on Mochila, go to ww.mochila.com.


-Handicapping The Emmys:

With The 61st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards scheduled for this Sunday, September 20 (on CBS at 8 p.m. ET), its time to handicap the key nominees. First up: Outstanding Supporting Actor and Actress in a Comedy.


Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy:


The nominees:

Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men, CBS)

Kevin Dillon (Entourage, HBO)

Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother, CBS)

Jack McBrayer (30 Rock, NBC)

Tracey Morgan (30 Rock, NBC)

Rainn Wilson (The Office, NBC)


Who Should Win: Neil Patrick Harris

Who Will Win: Neil Patrick Harris


The absence of recent winner Jeremy Piven (who dominated this category for the past three years) opens the door to a successor. And wouldn’t the timing be just perfect for first-time host (and three time nominee) Neil Patrick Harris? Jon Cryer, unfortunately, appears on a comedy Emmy voters do not take all that seriously. 30 Rock’s Jack McBrayer and Tracy Morgan (both first-time nominees) could cancel each other out. Kevin Dillon cannot compare to co-star Jeremy Piven. And the also worthy Rainn Wilson is on the biggest ensemble populated sitcom in the history of television. In other words, he could be lost in the shuffle. That said, grown-up Doogie Howser should finally reign supreme. 


Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy:


The nominees:

Kristin Chenowith (Pushing Daisies, ABC)

Jane Krakowski (30 Rock, NBC)

Elizabeth Perkins (Weeds, Showtime)

Amy Poehler (Saturday Night Live, NBC)

Kristen Wiig (Saturday Night Live, NBC)

Vanessa Williams (Ugly Betty, ABC)


Who Should Win: Vanessa Williams

Who Will Win: Amy Poehler


The critics raved about Pushing Daisies, but the fans did not and the absence of a third season could eliminate Kristen Chenowith. Emmy loves 30 Rock, but Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin carry the sitcom. Not enough Emmy voters are probably familiar with Weeds, potentially hurting Elizabeth Perkin’s chances. And Vanessa Williams is on a show that is rapidly losing steam. Although SNL’s Amy Poehler and Kristen Wiig could cancel each other out, Poehler’s impersonation of Hillary Clinton was spot on. And this was a presidential election year. That alone could give Amy Poehler the edge. 


-Speaking of The Emmy Awards:

The winners of the guest actor Emmys were handed out at the Creative Arts Primetime Emmys on Saturday and they are as follows:


-Guest Actor in a Comedy Series: Justin Timberlake (Saturday Night Live, NBC)

-Guest Actress in a Comedy Series: Tina Fey (Saturday Night Live, NBC)

-Guest Actor in a Drama Series: Michael J. Fox (Rescue Me, Fox)

-Guest Actress in a Drama Series: Ellen Burstyn (Law & Order: SVU, NBC)


-Thinking Out Loud:

If you watched the Video Music Awards on MTV last night, you witnessed hothead Kayne West storming up on stage while Taylor Swift was accepting her award for Best Female Video. Were you as appalled as I was? It should be interesting to see him as a guest on the debut of The Jay Leno Show tonight. Let him have it, Jay!


Executive Shuffle


-Christina Miller has been promoted to the dual role of senior vice president of Turner Sports Strategy/Marketing/Programming and Cartoon Network Enterprises. In addition to overseeing Cartoon Network’s Consumer Products and Home Video business in the United States, Miller will now be responsible for the overall management and direction of Turner Sports strategy, marketing and programming. 


-Daniel Casey has been named executive vice president of sales and general manager of multiplatform advertising sales for WorldLink. Most recently employed as executive vice president of sales and marketing with direct marketing company Revenue Frontier, Casey returns to WorldLink after a three-year hiatus to oversee its day-to-day operations.


TV Trivia Time:

A Dancing Fool


Which celebrity to-date has yet to compete on ABC’s soon-to-return Dancing With the Stars?

Billy Ray Cyrus
Linda Evans
Wayne Newton
Priscilla Presley
John Ratzenberger

The answer to yesterday’s question…


Which one of the following shows did not feature a former cast member from Charlie’s Angels?

Baby Boom
Jack and Mike
Love & War
One West Waikiki
That ‘70s Show

Is: c) Love & War, which featured former The Partridge Family and LA Law star Susan Dey (who had absolutely no chemistry opposite Jay Thomas) in season one, and former Designing Women star Annie Potts in seasons two and three. Potts was a better match for Thomas, but the generic sitcom absolutely wasted the plum Murphy Brown lead-out time period. 

-Current kudos goes to:
Don Abel, Gerry Bixenspan, Calvin Caltvedt, Larry Collins, Tom Condosta, John Ferlazzo, Jan Frazier, Carolyn Becker Hayes, Mike Holland, Bob Ingersoll, Deb Kainer, Steven Kurtzer, Stephen LaRue, Aaron Paquette, Greg Phelan, Colleen Roth, Joe Rubi, Andrew Stearn