October 10, 2011

The Sked: SUNDAY RATINGS October 9

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Written by: Mitch Metcalf
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CBS has moved slightly ahead of FOX season to date, while NBC moved past a sagging ABC on a strange Sunday night. 

ABC is simply falling apart on Sunday:  its three-week 18-49 rating track for the night is 2.5…2.3…2.0.  As Mitch Salem pointed out earlier this morning, Desperate Housewives and Pan Am are just in free fall.  (Ratings tracks for each Sunday series are available in the table below.)

In addition, FOX had a worst-case scenario Sunday.  CBS had the 4 pm late afternoon NFL game so FOX did not get the benefit of a strong rating at 7 pm (and it really needed it).  Instead two Cleveland Show repeats laid a couple of eggs (0.6 rating at 7:00 and 1.0 at 7:30).  Next, heavy rain in drought-ravaged Texas caused the postponement of Game 2 of the American League Championship Series.  Curiously, FOX ran a repeat of The X Factor from 8-10 pm rather than repeats of its animated comedies.  X Factor made a mess of the bed, leaving a bunch of 1.1 ratings in each half hour.      

Exactly three weeks into the season, FOX is cursing that weather in Texas.  Replacing a baseball playoff game on Sunday with a 1-rated repeat of The X Factor caused FOX to fall behind CBS season to date with Adults 18-49.  Currently CBS leads with a 3.0, followed by FOX’s 2.9.  Further, NBC is now in third with a 2.5, thanks to ABC’s fading female soaps.  ABC is averaging 2.45 through the first 21 nights of the season.  The CW is averaging 0.75

SUNDAY FALL 2011    Estimates         Episode Rating     
                    May   Sep   #1   #2   #3   #4   #5   #6   Avg
 700 AF Home Videos    1.5      1.5  1.4                      1.5

 800 Once Upon Time    2.0      10/23
 900 Desp Housewves    3.5      3.2  2.9  2.7                 2.9
1000 Pan Am            2.5      3.1  2.5  1.9                 2.5
 700 60 Minutes        2.4      2.3  3.5  3.6                 3.1
 800 Amazing Race      2.8      3.0  3.2  2.7                 3.0

 900 Good Wife         2.4      2.2  2.2  2.2                 2.2
1000 CSI Miami         2.6      2.3  2.4  2.0                 2.2
 815 NFL SNF           8.1      10.7 10.0 8.3  7.7  7.9       8.9
 700 Various   
 730 Various        
 800 Simpsons          3.0      3.9  3.0                      3.5

 830 Cleveland Show    2.3      3.1  2.6                      2.9
 900 Family Guy        3.3      4.1  3.5                      3.8
 930 American Dad      2.3      3.0  2.7                      2.9

Note:  the ratings estimates are for original episodes across the entire Fall (from mid-September through mid-December).  Generally, a series will premiere at a high level and then settle into a more normal number by week four-six.  The important number to look at as the season unfolds is the average-to-date column at the far right.  By the time episode four rolls around, look at the average of episodes one-four and you should have a pretty good idea how the fall — and the entire season — will sort out.   

Special Sunday Note: CBS programs will be a few tenths higher on nights CBS has the 4 pm national NFL game (and the entire schedule is shifted about a half hour later) and a few tenths lower when CBS does not have the late game. When FOX has the 4 pm game, football will go to about 7:30 and The OT will fill until 8 pm, lifting The Simpsons a few tenths.  When FOX does not have the 4 pm game, the 8-10 comedies will be slightly lower and comedy repeats will fill the 7 pm hour.  New animated comedy Allen Gregory is scheduled to run at 8:30 on October 30, although it could very well be pushed to mid-season.

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.