Solid Start for CBS’ Survivor: Tocatins

Friday, February 13, 2009
CBS Wins; Solid Start for Survivor: Tocatins
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:

It’s Friday the 13th!


Note: The Programming Insider will not be published on Monday in observance of President’s Day. See you back on Tuesday, Feb. 17.

Prime-Time Metered Market Thursday Ratings:
CBS Wins; Solid Start for Survivor: Tocatins
Thursday 2/12/09


CBS   8.5/14

ABC 7.8/13
NBC 4.4/ 7

Fox    3.2/ 5

CW    1.7/ 3


-Percent Change From the Year-Ago Evening (Thursday, Feb. 14, 2008):

ABC: +30, CBS: +18, Fox: – 3, NBC: -27, CW: -29


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

-Yesterday’s Winners:

Survivor: Tocatins (CBS), CSI (CBS), Grey’s Anatomy (ABC), Private Practice (ABC)

-Honorable Mention:
The Office (NBC)
-Keep a Positive Adult 18-49 Eye On:
30 Rock (NBC)

-Yesterday’s Losers (excluding repeats):

My Name is Earl (NBC), Kath & Kim (NBC), The 40th Annual NAACP Awards (Fox)

-Ratings Breakdown:

CBS led this second Thursday of February in the overnights, beating second-place ABC by nine percent. But ABC could ultimately lead the evening among adults 18-49. A distant third overall in the metered markets was NBC, followed by Fox and a night of repeats on the CW.


The latest edition of CBS’ long-running Survivor franchise, Tocatins – The Brazilian Highlands, opened with a 7.5 rating/12 share in the overnights from 8-9 p.m. Comparably, that was equal to the season-premiere of the Gabon edition last fall (7.5/12 on Sept. 25, 2008) and just five percent below the Micronesia premiere on Feb. 7, 2008 (7.9/12). Amazingly, this is the 18th edition of Survivor. 


Second in the metered markets in the 8 p.m. hour was ABC’s hiatus bound Ugly Betty (5.5/ 9), followed by NBC’s My Name is Earl (4.2/ 7) and the canceled Kath & Kim (3.4/ 5). Coming up on ABC in the time period on March 26 is new sitcom In the Motherhood and the returning Samantha Who? Ugly Betty will be returning later in the season.


Annual special The 40th Annual NAACP Awards was a lackluster option on Fox, meanwhile, at a mere 3.2/ 5 in the overnights from 8-10 p.m. And the CW was in repeats last night with aging core favorites Smallville (#5: 2.0/ 3) and Supernatural (#5: 1.5/ 2).


Despite the absence of William Petersen, CBS’ veteran CSI remains the show to beat in the overnights at 9 p.m., with a 10.7/16. Grey’s Anatomy on ABC, which will likely win the hour among adults 18-49, was second with a 9.3/14 (and once again featured a crossover episode with lead-out spin-off Private Practice). Over at NBC was The Office (#3: 5.0/ 8), which always delivers among adults 18-49 (and built from lead-in Kath & Kim by 47 percent), and 30 Rock (4.6/ 7). Personally speaking, I think last night’s episode of 30 Rock was the best I have ever seen. One week it is good, the next it is bad…that’s the ongoing pattern. We’ll see next week. 


ABC’s Private Practice benefited by another crossover from Grey’s Anatomy, with a dominant 8.8/15 at 10 p.m. Retention out of the second half of Grey’s Anatomy (9.4/14 at 9:30 p.m.) was rock solid at 94 percent. Second was also hiatus bound Eleventh Hour on CBS (7.3/12), followed by NBC’s soon-to-conclude ER (4.8/ 8), which should have ended three seasons ago. Coming up on CBS in April: murder mystery Harper’s Island.


Source: Nielsen Media Research data

Ratings Box:
What’s Hot/What’s Not
-Lost Leads Web Viewership in December:

Nielsen has unveiled its initial set of online viewing results based on individual shows watched on network web sites, and ABC’s Lost leads the pack in December 2008. It averaged 1.42 million unique viewers for the month. Second was NBC’s veteran Saturday Night Live at 1.11 million unique viewers, followed by Grey’s Anatomy on ABC at 879,000. Here are the top 10 online broadcast entertainment programs for December 2008 ranked by unique viewers:

Lost ( 1.42 million
Saturday Night Live ( 1.11
Grey’s Anatomy ( 879,000
Desperate Housewives ( 723,000
Heroes ( 685,000
Ugly Betty ( 631,000
Samantha Who? ( 560,000
Scrubs ( 519,000
Survivor ( 496,000
True Beauty ( 462,000

Based on ratings for the week of Feb. 2, ABC gabfest The View finished first in daytime in total viewers (4.42 million) for the fourth consecutive week. It was also the second most-watched show among women 18-49 (1.08 million), with its best performance in the demo since the week of Nov. 24, 2008. 

-Speaking of Daytime…:

Here are the daytime rankings based on total viewers and women 18-49 for the week of Feb. 2:

Total Viewers:
CBS: 3.76 million, ABC: 3.08, NBC: 2.98
Women 18-49:

NBC: 1.4 rating / 927,000, ABC: 1.4 rating / 918,000, CBS: 1.2 rating / 820,000

-Final Wednesday Nationals:

Led by a two-hour edition of American Idol, Fox stood well above the rest, beating the competition combined in both total viewers and adults 18-49. ABC’s Lost, however, has sprung a leak, with 9.82 million viewers (#3) and a 4.4/10 among adults 18-49 (#2) in the 9 p.m. hour. Comparably, that was its worst performance to-date for an original episode. And it did not benefit relocated lead-out Life on Mars, which was third at 10 p.m. with just 4.63 million viewers and a 1.6/ 4 in the demo. Equally disappointing was NBC’s Life at 4.59 million viewers (#4) and a 1.3/ 3 among adults 18-49 (#4) at 9 p.m.


Here are the final national ratings for Wednesday, Feb. 11:


Fox: 14.0 rating/22 share, CBS: 6.6/10, ABC and NBC: 3.9/ 6 each, CW: 0.7/ 1, MNTV: 0.5/ 1

Total Viewers:

Fox: 24.82 million, CBS: 10.34, ABC: 6.31, NBC: 5.84, CW: 950,000, MNTV: 870,000

Adults 18-49:

Fox: 9.5 rating/23 share, CBS: 2.7/ 7, ABC: 2.6/ 6, NBC: 1.6/ 4, CW: 0.4/ 1, MNTV: 0.3/ 8

Source: Nielsen Media Research data

On the Air This Weekend:
Prime-Time Programming Options

Friday 2/13/09

 8:00 p.m. Wife Swap

 9:00 p.m. Supernanny

10:00 p.m. 20/20

 8:00 p.m. Ghost Whisperer

 9:00 p.m. Flashpoint

10:00 p.m. Numb3rs

 8:00 p.m. Howie Do It (two episodes)

 9:00 p.m. Friday Night Lights  

10:00 p.m. Dateline

 8:00 p.m. Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (return, new day)

 9:00 p.m. Dollhouse (premiere)


 8:00 p.m. Everybody Hates Chris (R)

 8:30 p.m. The Game (R)

 9:00 p.m. 13 – Fear is Real

 8:00 p.m. Friday Night Smackdown!

New Program Descriptions


Dollhouse (Fox)

After their personalities are wiped clean, members of a highly illegal and underground group of individuals (the “Actives”) who live in a facility called “The Dollhouse” are hired to take on assignments and become whoever their client needs them to be. Former Buffy star Eliza Dushku stars.

Saturday 2/14/09
 8:00 p.m. Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown (R)
 8:30 p.m. A Charlie Brown Valentine (R)

 9:00 p.m. Grey’s Anatomy (R)

10:00 p.m. Private Practice (R)
 8:00 p.m. Numb3rs (R)

 9:00 p.m. NCIS (R)

10:00 p.m. 48 Hours Mystery

 8:00 p.m. Law & Order: Criminal Intent (R)

 9:00 p.m. Law & Order (R)

10:00 p.m. Law & Order: SVU (R)

 8:00 p.m.  Cops

 9:00 p.m. America’s Most Wanted


 8:00 p.m. Movie: Pushing Tin (R)

Sunday 2/15/09

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

 8:00 p.m. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (R)

 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 14 (season premiere)

 9:00 p.m. Cold Case

10:00 p.m. The Unit

 7:00 p.m. Dateline (two hours)

 9:00 p.m. Movie – XIII (part two)


 7:00 p.m. NASCAR

 7:30 p.m. American Dad (R)

 8:00 p.m. The Simpsons

 8:30 p.m. King of the Hill

 9:00 p.m. Family Guy

 9:30 p.m. American Dad


 7:00 p.m. Jericho (R)

 8:00 p.m. Sunday Movie: Golden Eye (R)


TV Tidbits:

Notes of Interest


-More Rescue Me:

FX has renewed drama Rescue Me for a sixth season, with an order for 18 additional episodes. Season five opens on Tuesday, April 7 at 10 p.m. ET. Rescue Me star Denis Leary, meanwhile, will launch The Rescue Me Comedy Tour, an 11-city live comedy engagement with co-stars Adam Ferrara and Lenny Clarke and other stand-up comedians. For more information, click on


       -U2 Scheduled for a Full Week on Letterman:

Rock legends U2 will perform for an unprecedented five nights in a row on CBS’ The Late Show with David Letterman the week of March 2. Their multiple appearances will coincide with the release of their 12th album, No Line on the Horizon, on March 3. U2’s last appearance on Letterman was on Oct. 29, 2001.


-The CW Pushes Back Return of Top Model:

Veteran CW reality/competition America’s Next Top Model will open its 12th cycle on Wednesday, March 4 (instead of Feb. 25 as originally planned).


-Sports Fans, Take Note:

Since there is more to life than just TV (bite your tongue!), here is a new destination for sports fans: You will find breaking news, new ad campaigns, behind-the-scenes information on sports deals, Q&As with influential executives, agents and athletes, and commentary on hot and controversial issues in sports.  Check it out!


American Idol and Lie to Me will not be flipping time periods next Wednesday as reported yesterday. Lie to Me will move into the Wednesday 8 p.m. hour on March 11, followed by the live results edition of American Idol. 


TV Trivia Time:

It’s Friday the 13th!


What was Eddie’s middle name on The Munsters?


The answer to yesterday’s trivia question…


Which one of the following talk show hosts once guest starred on Laverne & Shirley?

Jenny Jones
Jay Leno
David Letterman
Regis Philbin
Geraldo Rivera

Is: c) Jay Leno, who appeared in two episodes as Bobby Bitts. All together now:

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight. Schlemiel, schlimazel, hasenpfeffer incorporated. 
We’re gonna do it!
Give us any chance, we’ll take it.
Give us any rule, we’ll break it.
We’re gonna make our dreams come true.
Doin’ it our way.

Nothin’s gonna turn us back now, 
Straight ahead and on the track now.
We’re gonna make our dreams come true, 
Doin’ it our way.

There is nothing we won’t try,
Never heard the word impossible.
This time there’s no stopping us.
We’re gonna do it.

On your mark, get set, and go now,
Got a dream and we just know now,
We’re gonna make our dream come true.   
And we’ll do it our way, yes our way.
Make all our dreams come true,
And do it our way, yes our way,
Make all our dreams come true
For me and you.

-Current kudos goes to:
Suzanne Ackey, Ric Beddingfield, Mikki Beno, Gerry Bixenspan, Terrance Clarkin, Larry Collins, Tom Condosta, John Ferlazzo, Patricia Finn, Jerry Gibbons, Kevin Jones, Deb Kainer, Spencer Kancher, Synda Kollman, Tom Lawrenson, Charmaine Leary, Laura Nachman, Tony Naldrett, Stephen O’Rourke, Jodi Perris, Gordon Purcell, Michael Ratliffe, Colleen Roth, Lindsey Rothman, Greg Salerno, Maxine Schulman, Greg Scordato, Tina Tran, Myndi Weinraub, David Williams, Ted Zawislak