Solid Sampling for NBC’s Believe

Bachelor finale helps put ABC over the top

In a night dominated by ABC’s Bachelor postmortem, a special preview of NBC’s new Sunday drama series Believe drew a fair amount of sampling.

According to Nielsen fast national data, the 10 p.m. airing of Believe delivered 10.6 million viewers and a 2.7 in the adults 18-49 demo, marking a 4 percent increase versus the spring premiere of Revolution a year ago. Believe was flat when compared to the most recent installment of the regular time slot occupant, The Blacklist, which scared up 11 million viewers and a 2.7 in the dollar demo on March 3.

Believe retained 73 percent of the lead-in supplied by The Voice, which tied a season low with a 3.7 rating. Half-hour retention was strong, as the 10:30 p.m.-11 p.m. segment averaged a 2.6, or 90 percent of the 2.9 rating Believe drew in the front half.

Upon shifting to its regular Sunday 9 p.m. slot on March 16, Believe will lead into another new midseason effort, the Gillian Anderson-Dermot Mulroney thriller Crisis

Sundays are a tough nut to crack. Believe will be competing with the final three episodes of Season 4 of AMC’s The Walking Dead, as well as AMC’s new supernatural hit Resurrection, the Fox science series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey and CBS’ The Good Wife.

Believe was created by Alfonso Cuarón, who recently won the Academy Award for Best Director for his work on the film Gravity. J.J. Abrams is an executive producer on the show.

Over at ABC, the season finale of The Bachelor and the After the Final Rose wrap-up show put up predictably big numbers, averaging 10.1 million viewers and a 3.3 rating and 11 million viewers and a 3.8, respectively.

The culmination of the 18th cycle of The Bachelor and the unveiling of the next Bachelorette helped ABC to a win on the overall night, topping NBC by a four-tenths of a point (3.6 to 3.2). CBS took third with a 1.7 in the 18-49 demo, as How I Met Your Mother fell 21 percent to a 2.7 and Mike & Molly dropped 18 percent. Intelligence was up a tenth to a 1.3, while Mom and 2 Broke Girls were in repeats.

At Fox, Bones was up 6 percent to a 1.7 while the recently renewed Kevin Bacon vehicle The Following fell 12 percent to a series-low 1.5 rating.