February 3, 2014



NETWORK UPDATE:  In final numbers, SUPER BOWL XLVIII had a 39.3 rating in 18-49s, just slightly below last year’s 39.7 (the latter number excludes the game’s blackout period).  However, in total viewers this was the most-watched Super Bowl–in fact, the most watched network show–ever, with FOX reporting 111.5M sets of eyeballs.  (UPDATED UPDATE:  FOX has found some more viewers, and the final–“final”?–tally is 112.2M sets of eyeballs.)  NEW GIRL and BROOKLYN NINE-NINE adjusted up a bit, respectively by 0.3 to 11.4 and by 0.2 to 6.9.  PBS doesn’t release 18-49 numbers, but DOWNTON ABBEY had 6.8M total viewers, up 200K from last year, and SHERLOCK had 3M viewers, up 100K from last week.

SUNDAY CABLE:  Aside from ESPN post-game coverage at 1.1, the night’s strongest show was Animal Planet’s PUPPY BOWL, which was even with last year at 1.0.  Showtime decided at the last minute to air new episodes of its original shows (HBO preempted TRUE DETECTIVE and premiered the week’s GIRLS and LOOKING on Saturday), and perhaps should have kept things as they were:  SHAMELESS was down by 1/3 to 0.6, and HOUSE OF LIES and EPISODES were unreported but seemingly at 0.3 or below.

There was about as much suspense about which network won the ratings last night as there was by halftime about who would win the game.

Daily Comparison 2014 Sun Feb 02 three way v2

FOX:  Preliminary numbers have SUPER BOWL XLVIII at 34.4 in 18-49s, which if it holds would put the game down 5.3 points from last year.  Of course, Seattle removed all suspense from this one early, and so the ratings dropped as the night went on.  The game’s outcome was so obvious, in fact, that both teams bowed to the inevitable and didn’t take time-outs in the second half.  This dented FOX’s revenues a bit (fewer game stoppages means fewer commercials), but it allowed all of NEW GIRL and 7 minutes of BROOKLYN NINE-NINE to air in primetime, helping their results.  New Girl had a timezone-adjusted 11.1 in 18-49s, far better than the 7.8 CBS did last year with a run of Elementary (which started particularly late because of the blackout that delayed the game).  Brooklyn Nine-Nine had an adjusted 6.7, by far the biggest rating that show has ever had, although behind last year’s late-starting Elementary.

OTHER NETWORKS:  It goes without saying that no other network was even remotely close to FOX last night.  ABC fared “best” with 1.1 for a rerun SHARK TANK in the 10PM hour (a 9PM run was at 0.6), while CBS was highlighted by 0.9 for an NCIS rerun (also at 10PM) and NBC aired the movie LITTLE FOCKERS and was at 0.6.

Things are back to normal tonight–well, briefly, before the Olympics kick in on Thursday.  All the networks are new, with NBC preempting The Blacklist for a SPORTS ILLUSTRATED SWIMSUIT special.  CW airs the last episode of BEAUTY & THE BEAST before it takes a break and moves to Fridays.


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.