THE PROGRAMMING INSIDER
Thursday, March 10, 2011
Prime-Time Metered Market Wednesday Ratings:
Idol Leads Fox to Victory; Mixed Freshman Series Results
What’s Hot/What’s Not
On the Air Tonight: Prime-Time Programming Options
Notes of Interest
TV Trivia Time:
Wednesday 3/09/11 Note: The overnight data now includes DVR playback until 3 a.m. local time. One year earlier it was based on Live data only. All times are ET/PT.
American Idol (Fox), Survivor: Redemption Island (CBS)
-Yesterday’s Losers (excluding repeats):
Minute to Win It (NBC), Shedding for the Wedding (CW), Mr. Sunshine (ABC), Off the Map (ABC)
The home of American Idol, Fox, stood well above the competition last night, more than doubling second-place CBS in the overnights. But let’s not rule out CBS’ still addictive (and just renewed) Survivor, which I will get to momentarily. In the distant No. 3 spot was ABC, which was in repeats from 8-9:30 p.m., followed by NBC and The CW. Two-thirds of NBC’s line-up was also encore telecasts. To the readers wondering why there are currently so many repeats, March is always riddled with second-runs so the networks have enough fresh product for the May sweeps.
Beginning with American Idol, the still rock-solid music competition scored a considerable 15.9 rating/25 share from 8-10 p.m., building by half-hour as follows:
American Idol (Fox)
8:00 p.m.: 14.8/24 (#1)
8:30 p.m.: 16.0/25 (#1)
9:00 p.m.: 16.2/25 (#1)
9:30 p.m.: 16.6/25 (#1)
While you cannot deny the ongoing strength of this juggernaut, creatively Idol is lacking minus the brutal honestly of Simon Cowell, who would have had plenty of negative comments to make last night about Ashthon Jones, Haley Reinhart, Thia Megia and Karen Rodriguez. Don’t you miss his “karaoke” remarks? My pick to go home tonight: Haley Reinhart.
Over at CBS, still potent Survivor: Redemption Island was no slouch, with a second-place 6.5/10 in the overnights at 8 p.m. Comparably, that bested year-ago occupants The New Adventures of Old Christine (5.1/ 8 on March 10, 2010) and Gary Unmarried (4.4/ 7) by an average of 37 percent. SPOILER ALERT…if you did not see last night’s episode yet, stop reading. But the departure of Russell Hantz, who lost on Redemption Island to Matt, will go down in the Survivor record books as one of the most memorable moments. While there was every reason to believe Russell would not exit quietly, the tears only proved that the Survivor villain is only human.
Airing out of Survivor last night was a repeat of Criminal Minds (#2: 5.5/ 9 at 9 p.m.), followed by week four of spin-off Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior as a dominant (but series-low) 6.1/10 at 10 p.m. While Suspect Behavior did built by nine percent out of the 9:30 p.m. portion of its parent series (5.6/ 9), it did face a repeat of Law & Order: SVU on NBC. That said, Suspect Behavior is not the hit CBS was hoping for. Four-week overnight track for Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior: 8.4/12 – 6.3/11 – 6.9/12 – 6.1/10.
Moving to ABC, the network filled the 8 p.m. hour with back-to-back repeats of The Middle at an average 3.7/ 6 in the overnights, followed by a repeat of Modern Family at a third-place 4.6/ 7 at 9 p.m. Minus the original lead-in support, week four of Matthew Perry sitcom Mr. Sunshine slipped to a series-low (and fourth-place) 3.7/ 6 at 9:30 p.m. Four week overnight track for Mr. Sunshine: 7.7/11 – 5.0/ 8 – 4.5/ 7 – 5.2/ 8 – 3.7/ 6.
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