October 18, 2011

THE SKED: Monday Ratings – Network Scorecard – 10/17/11

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Written by: Mitch Salem
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Comparisons to last Monday may be misleading, since due to baseball overrun that night, many shows aired either out of their normal timeslots or against atypical competition.
FOXTERRA NOVA, for example, didn’t begin until almost 9PM last week, and FOX can’t be pleased that it didn’t come back last night all the way to the prior week’s number; it was down almost 15% from 2 weeks ago.  Making matters worse, the show will be preempted next week, either by Game 5 of the World Series or by a repeat if the Series only runs 4 games.  The network will be hoping the very expensive show can return with strength in November.  Similarly, HOUSE is still 20% off both its season premiere and last season’s average.

CBS:  Even with declines since its massive premiere, 2 1/2 MEN is still running 20% ahead of last season’s average.  Without having to face House in the 10PM slot, HAWAII 5-0 rebounded to where it had been 2 weeks ago.  The other sitcoms were all down a bit from 2 weeks ago, but still comfortably ahead of last season (or in the case of 2 BROKE GIRLS, steady with its hour-mate).
ABC:  Both DANCING WITH THE STARS and CASTLE returned to their levels from 2 weeks ago.  
NBC:  THE SING-OFF was actually down a sliver from 2 weeks ago.  The network’s PRIME SUSPECT runs are more promo than genuine programming, and we’ll find out when Suspect airs on Oct. 27 if all the effort has had any effect.
CW:  GOSSIP GIRL is still down about 30% from last season’s average.  As Mitch Metcalf noted, the HART OF DIXIE number is likely inflated by Miami football viewers.
SUNDAY CABLE NOTES:  The rest of the numbers are in for Sunday’s cable telecasts, and not surprisingly what was spectacularly good for AMC and THE WALKING DEAD was less positive for their direct scripted competition:  both BOARDWALK EMPIRE and DEXTER were down in the neighborhood of 20% from the previous week.  Of course, HBO and Showtime re-air their episodes all week, as well as making them available on other platforms, so this doesn’t necessarily mean lasting damage to either series.  (For HOMELAND fans:  it held well against the last half-hour of the extended DEAD episode, although still significantly below its Dexter lead-in.)
Tonight ABC premieres MAN UP! and will hope LAST MAN STANDING sustains last week’s strong premiere numbers to give it an effective lead-in, while CBS will continue to scrutinize the performance of UNFORGETTABLE.  

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."