February 27, 2014



AFTERNOON UPDATE:  Nothing moved by more than 0.1 from this morning, although there were a few shifts that accomplished points of pride.  Thanks to the last-minute lift, NASHVILLE avoided its low with 1.3, while an upward move for AMERICAN IDOL (2.7) and a downward one for SURVIVOR (2.4) widened their gap to 0.3.  However, THE MIDDLE (1.7) and SUBURGATORY (1.4) are now at new lows, and the debut of MIXOLOGY (1.7) is even more ignominious.  CRIMINAL MINDS declined 0.1 as well, to 2.2. 

WEDNESDAY CABLE:  FX’s hopes for a Season 2 surge for THE AMERICANS didn’t materialize, as the show debuted with 0.7.  That sounds particularly bad when compared to last year’s 1.2 series launch, but it’s in line with the show’s series average, and actually up 0.1 from the Season 1 finale.  Meanwhile, DUCK DYNASTY (A&E) becomes less dominant by the week, down another 0.3 to 2.0 (just over half of last year’s rating), with companion show WAHLBURGERS down 0.1 to 1.1.  REAL WORLD EXPLOSION (MTV) fell 0.2 to 0.9.  WORKAHOLICS (Comedy) and ROBOT CHICKEN (Adult Swim) were at 0.8. 


Some veterans shone last night; some didn’t.

Daily Comparison three way 2014 Wed Feb 26

FOX:  Any hope that the Olympics caused a mere temporary aberration in AMERICAN IDOL‘s ratings was blown, as Idol could only tie last week’s Wednesday-record low 2.6.  That likely means a similar result tonight, and FOX coming to terms with the fact that its one-time blockbuster is now a moderate success.

NBC:  “Crossover” episodes used to be a sweeps month staple, with characters from one network show making appearances on another to tell a continuous story.  It’s less frequent now, but the stunt still works:  SVU rose 0.2 from its last new episode to 2.0, and CHICAGO PD hit a new series high, up an impressive 0.5 to 2.2.  The night started less notably with 1.3 for REVOLUTION, no increase from its series low.

ABC:  The season gets worse and worse.  THE MIDDLE tied its season low, dropping 0.4 from its last original to 1.8, then SUBURGATORY tied its series low by falling 0.2 to 1.5, and MODERN FAMILY set a new season low, down 0.4 to 3.1.  All that set the stage for the debut of MIXOLOGY, weaker at 1.8 than any show that’s ever launched after Modern Family.  Just to round things out, NASHVILLE tied its series low, down 0.1 to 1.2.

CBS:  Some college basketball preemptions may shift these numbers a bit, but for now, SURVIVOR had a first-rate cycle premiere, up 0.1 from last spring to 2.5–notably, a mere 0.1 below American Idol.  An out-of-timeslot CRIMINAL MINDS, which also had to air against the conclusion of the Dick Wolf crossover event, was down 0.2 to 2.3.

CW:  ARROW dropped 0.1 to 0.9, while THE TOMORROW PEOPLE held at 0.5.

Tonight ABC will beg the TV gods that GREY’S ANATOMY and SCANDAL return after their long hiatuses as strong as they left; the network starts the evening with an hour of pre-Oscar filler.  All the other networks are new, and on cable, Sundance Channel launches THE RED ROAD, and History Channel has the Season 2 premiere of THE VIKINGS.



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."