July 10, 2015

SHARK WEEK First Four Nights

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Written by: Mitch Metcalf
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Through the first four nights (Sunday-Wednesday), SHARK WEEK on Discovery is averaging 3,077,000 persons 2+ live+same day and a 1.38 adult 18-49 rating.  Comparing the similar nights from past years, Shark Week 2015 is down -5% with persons 2+ from 2014 and down -9% from 2013.  With adults 18-49, the declines are even steeper: 2015 is down -8% versus last year and -13% from 2013.  Consequently, the median age has ticked up for Shark Week, growing four full years since 2012.  Some of the recent erosion can be attributed to the general ratings pressure almost all networks are feeling, and some of this year’s decline can be blamed on the move to early July from the traditional early August home.  All schedule changes bring inherent risk as viewer habits can be easily broken.  However, the 2015 Shark Week numbers are still very good for any network in the summer (broadcast or cable)

Original telecast detail for recent years is also available further down the chart below.  So far this year, the total viewer crown goes to Super Predator on Wednesday, and it shares the 18-49 crown this year with Monster Mako on Sunday.  Just scan down the list and you will see some of the best titles in TV history.  Looking back two years, Sunday August 10, 2013, the night of the mock-documentary Megalodon Monster Shark, has a very good shot at forever being the high-water mark for Shark Week.  Given the beating Discovery and its brand took for veering to far into the realm of entertainment, future Shark Weeks will probably keep it more real and “settle” for the 3 million viewer range rather then the 5 million viewer brass ring that stunt made possible.

Shark Week Nights 1 to 4 2012 to 2015

About the Author

Mitch Metcalf
MITCH METCALF has been tracking every US film release of over 500 screens (over 2300 movies and counting) since the storied weekend of May 20, 1994, when Maverick and Beverly Hills Cop 3 inspired countless aficionados to devote their lives to the art of cinema. Prior to that, he studied Politics and Economics at Princeton in order to prepare for his dream of working in television. He has been Head of West Coast Research at ABC, then moved to NBC in 2000 and became Head of Scheduling for 11 years.