April 20, 2012



When you’re NBC, even a 1.8 rating can look good.
NBCPARKS & RECREATION returned to the schedule last night in the 9:30PM slot, with a 1.8 that was far better than the 1.2-1.5 that Up All Night had been getting there.  Parks held 80% of its lead-in from THE OFFICE (which tied last week’s all-time 2.2 low), and there isn’t much more NBC can ask of that slot.  Earlier, COMMUNITY tied its 1.3 series low, but 30 ROCK was up a bit to 1.5.  AWAKE, with another dull episode that showed no interest in its supposed central “mystery,” fell to a new low 0.8.

ABC:  MISSING has actually gotten not-bad in a B-movie way (spoiler alert:  if you thought they couldn’t really be killing off Sean Bean after 1 scene in the pilot, you were right), but it’s too late:  the show fell to a new low 1.3.  GREY’S ANATOMY, though, with a 3.2 that was helped by the CBS rerun against it, had its best rating in months.  SCANDAL only ticked up to a 2.1, at the low end of what Private Practice was doing in that hour.  (And now, with Practice doing badly on Tuesdays, ABC has to hope they aren’t causing permanent harm to what’s been a fairly reliable 2d-tier success for them.)
FOXAMERICAN IDOL handily won the night for FOX, even though its 3.9 tied a series low.  TOUCH, though, fell to a series low 2.1.  This means that none of FOX’s new dramas this season have worked (although the network might bring one back for cosmetic reasons), which is good news for the producers of its 1-hour pilots.
CBS:  A night of reruns (except for RULES OF ENGAGEMENT, which tied its series low 2.2).  Even with a repeat, THE BIG BANG THEORY was in 2d place for its half-hour.
CW:  THE VAMPIRE DIARIES and THE SECRET CIRCLE returned with new episodes, but no one seemed to notice.  Both shows hit series lows, with a 1.0 and 0.5 respectively.  That Vampire number has to scare CW more than any bloodsucker could, because it’s the network’s only show with a rating that doesn’t start with a “0”.  
Tonight CBS tries another experiment, leading off an all-rerun night with repeats of MIKE & MOLLY and RULES OF ENGAGEMENT in the 8PM hour.   All the scripted shows on the other networks are new.

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."