The CW Has Some Bright Spots, But Lingering Issues

Rebuilding a network is never easy, particularly when one of its most-watched franchises has relocated elsewhere. So there was every reason to believe that The CW without Friday Night Smackdown! would open this season at a disadvantage: fewer total viewers (from 2.9 million to 2.6 million season-to-date, according to Nielsen Media Research) and a smaller male audience. But by shifting its strategy to serialized dramas like Gossip Girl and recent entry 90210, The CW has found its niche: young female viewers.

Based on results through Oct. 28 (from an early launch on Sept. 1), ratings for The CW among women 18-34 (1.8) and women 18-49 (1.5) are up by 20 and 7 percent, respectively, from the same period a year ago. Monday