Race for Midweek Overnight Dominance

Thursday, June 25, 2009
Prime-Time Metered Market Wednesday Ratings:

Dominance Neck-and-Neck Between Fox, NBC and CBS

Ratings Box:
What’s Hot/What’s Not

On the Air Tonight:
Prime-Time Programming Options 

TV Tidbits:
Notes of Interest
TV Trivia Time:
A Strange Habit

Dominance Neck-and-Neck Between Fox, NBC and CBS

Wednesday 6/24/09


Fox    4.8/ 8
NBC 4.6/ 8
CBS   4.5/ 8
ABC   3.5/ 6
CW    0.8/ 1

-Percent Change From the Year-Ago Evening (Wednesday, June 25, 2008):

 Fox: +30, CBS: -13, CW: -20, NBC: -31, ABC: -35

-Yesterday’s Winners:

(Expectations are, of course, lower in the summer months)

Wipeout (ABC), America’s Got Talent (NBC), So You Think You Can Dance (Fox), Criminal Minds R (CBS), CSI: NY R (CBS)


-Yesterday’s Losers (Excluding Repeats):

I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! (NBC), I Survived a Japanese Game Show (ABC)

-Ratings Breakdown:

It was a horse race for first in the Wednesday overnights, with only three-tenths of a rating point separating Fox, NBC and CBS. But either NBC or Fox is expected to win the evening among adults 18-49 on the strength of America’s Got Talent and So You Think You Can Dance.


Another two-hour edition of Fox’s So You Think You Can Dance finished first overall from 8-10 p.m., with a 4.8 rating/8 share and growth in every half hour. Take a look:

So You Think You Can Dance (Fox)
8:00 p.m.: 4.3/ 8 (#1t)
8:30 p.m.: 4.8/ 9 (#1)
9:00 p.m.: 4.9/ 8 (#3)
9:30 p.m.: 5.0/ 8 (#3)

While the dance competition continues to lose steam from one year earlier, there is still interest in So You Think You Can Dance in the summer. This coming fall I am not so sure about.


In season-finale news, NBC’s I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! (the ultimate reality show about “nothing”) concluded its three week run with an uneventful (and fourth-place) 3.0/ 6 in the overnights from 8-9 p.m. Lou Diamond Phillips, a once highly regarded actor, won the crown, with Torrie Wilson second. In all my years of watching reality/competitions (and there are many), losers Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt will go down in my book as the worst “celebrity” participants. Please everyone…let’s forget about them. 


Next on NBC was America’s Got Talent, with a dominant 6.1/11 at 9 p.m., followed by the premiere of scripted drama The Philanthropist at a second-place 4.8/ 9 in the overnights at 10 p.m. Comparably, The Philanthropist held only 73 percent of the 9:30 p.m. portion of America’s Got Talent (6.6/11). And it dipped by 15 percent at 10:30 p.m. (5.2/ 9 to 4.4/ 8). Just curious: am I the only one who can’t stand whiny Neve Campbell?


CBS aired another Wednesday of all repeats with its combination of The New Adventures of Old Christine (#3: 3.2/ 6), Gary Unmarried (#3: 3.1/ 6), Criminal Minds (#2: 5.4/ 9) and CSI: NY (#1: 5.1/ 9). Notice how the CSI: NY encore outdelivered the original installment of The Philanthropist.


Over at ABC, summer favorite Wipeout tied So You Think You Can Dance in the metered markets, with a 4.6/ 9 from 8-9 p.m. While that may not seem like much, it should be enough to warrant a rating in the high 2-range among adults 18-49. For the early part of the summer, that’s not bad. Lead-out I Survived a Japanese Game Show dropped the overnight ratings ball, with a fourth-place 2.4/ 4 from 9-10 p.m. Comparably, retention out of the second half of lead-in Wipeout (4.7/ 8 at 8:30 p.m.) was just 51 percent. Capping off the evening for ABC was Primetime – Questions for the President: Prescription for America at a third-place 3.7/ 7.


Last, and very least, were repeats of America’s Next Top Model (0.8/ 2) and Hitched or Ditched (0.8/ 1) on The CW. Just what we need…an encore telecast of Hitched or Ditched!


Source: Nielsen Media Research data (R = repeat)


Ratings Box:

What’s Hot/What’s Not
-TNT Scores on Tuesday:

Week two of scripted drama Hawthorne was consistent on TNT at 3.8 million total viewers, 1.5 million adults 18-49 and 1.7 million adults 25-54 in the Tuesday 9 p.m. hour on June 23. Although four out of five new series lose audience in their second week, Hawthorne actually built by five percent among adults 25-54. Lead-out Saving Grace remains compatible at 10 p.m., with retention this week of 84 percent in total viewers (3.2 million) and 82 percent among adults 25-54 (1.4 million).

-Second-Place Finish for ABC’s The Superstars:

The debut of ABC reality/competition The Superstars, which is based on ABC’s classic Wide World of Sports, opened second in the Tuesday 8 p.m. hour on June 23, with 4.27 million viewers and a 1.5 rating/5 share among adults 18-49. First in the time period was a repeat of CBS’ NCIS at 11.09 million viewers and a 1.8/ 6 in the demo. That’s right: over 11 million viewers for a repeat in late June!


-Also on Tuesday:

Season four of NBC summer favorite America’s Got Talent, now hosted by Nick Cannon, was off and running with a hefty (and dominant) 11.46 million viewers and a 3.2/10 among adults 18-49 in the 9-11 p.m. block on Tuesday.

-Solid Results for ABC Family on Monday:

The second season-premiere of ABC Family’s The Secret Life of an American Teenager rose to a series high, with 4.7 million viewers in the Monday 8 p.m. hour on June 22. Results among adults 18-34 (1.4 million), adults 18-49 (2.1 million) and persons 12-34 (2.9 million) were the second highest to-date. Comparably, The Secret Life of an American Teenager ranked as Monday’s top-rated scripted series in adults 18-34, persons 12-34 and all key female demos, building by as much as 1829 percent (yes…1829 percent!) among persons 12-34 from year-ago time period occupant The Middleman.


In series-premiere news, lead-out Make it Or Break It launched as ABC Family’s No. 2 series to-date (behind the premiere of The Secret Life of the American Teenager in 2008) among adults 18-34 (606,000) and persons 12-34 (1.3 million) at 9 p.m. It was also the cable net’s second most-watched series premiere on record among women 18-34 (511,000), women 18-49 (840,000) and females 12-34 (1.1 million). And it finished as cable’s No. 1 scripted show in the hour in women 18-34, persons 12-34 and females 12-34, growing from the year-ago time period average (Movie Little Nicky) by as much as 856 percent in persons 12-34.


Source: Nielsen Media Research data (* = canceled)


On the Air Tonight:
Prime-Time Programming Options

Thursday 6/25/09
 8:00 p.m. Samantha Who?
 8:30 p.m. In the Motherhood
 9:00 p.m. Grey’s Anatomy (R)

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


 8:00 p.m. Criminal Minds (R)

 9:00 p.m. CSI (R)

10:00 p.m. The Mentalist (R)

 8:00 p.m. 30 Rock (R)

 8:30 p.m. The Office (R)

 9:00 p.m. The Office (R)
 9:30 p.m. 30 Rock (R)

10:00 p.m. The Listener


 8:00 p.m. Bones (R)

 9:00 p.m. So You Think You Can Dance Results Show


 8:00 p.m. Smallville (R)

 9:00 p.m. Supernatural (R)


 8:00 p.m. Movie: The Street King (R)


TV Tidbits:

Notes of Interest


-10 Best Picture Nominees:

The 82nd Annual Academy Awards, which will be broadcast live from the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood on ABC on Sunday, March 7, 2010, will increase the number of films vying for Best Picture from five to 10. Historically, there were once as many as 12 nominees in the category (in 1934 and 1935). “After more than six decades, the Academy is returning to some of its earlier roots, when a wider field competed for the top award of the year,” said Academy Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Sid Ganis. “The final outcome, of course, will be the same – one Best Picture winner – but the race to the finish line will feature 10, not just five, great movies from 2009.”