October 31, 2012

THE SKED: Sunday Cable Scorecard – 10/28/12


The combination of the final game of the World Series and Sunday Night Football did nothing to dent the numbers on cable’s showcase night of the week.

AMC:  A pivotal episode of THE WALKING DEAD, which also happened to be the series’ best episode since it first started, was naturally the night’s big winner, incredibly up from the previous week to a 5.4 rating in 18-49s for its 9PM airing, with another 1.6 for the 10PM rerun.  That 7.0 total tied it once again with Sunday Night Football as the most-watched show of the entire week on television.  (In total viewers, the two showings combined for 13.6M people.)  Even the 8PM rebroadcast of the previous week’s episode had a 1.2, almost as high as Thursday’s first-run episode of 30 Rock on NBC.  TALKING DEAD retained a 1.0 rating at 11PM.

SHOWTIME:  HOMELAND may or may not have deserved to win last year’s Emmy against Mad Men and Breaking Bad, but this season it’s making a compelling case to win another, as the show delivered another riveting, spectacularly acted hour.  From Showtime’s point of view, the even better news was that it set a new series high with 0.9 in 18-49s and total viewership over 2M people.  This followed a season-high DEXTER at a 1.2 with 2.3M total viewers, the first time in Showtime history that the network aired two back-to-back hours with over 2 million viewers.  (These are, again, numbers for initial on-air viewings only–the audience numbers grow enormously when repeats throughout the week and on affiliated platforms are included, which is more fair in the case of pay TV since, with no advertising, one viewing has as much value as any other for the network.)

HBO:  BOARDWALK EMPIRE took place entirely on Easter Sunday of 1923, and it often felt as though the episode was lasting an entire afternoon and evening.  Nevertheless, the episode’s rating was down only marginally to 0.8, with a more sizable decline in total viewers, down about 375K to just under 2 million. TREME, also not exactly action-packed this week, was at its accustomed levels,  a rounded-up 0.2 in 18-49s and a bit fewer than 500K total viewers.  (HBO announced last week that the show’s final season, which is essentially a gift to series creator David Simon and Treme‘s loyal fans, will run 5 hours instead of the usual 10.)
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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."