October 10, 2012


NBC thanks whatever it worships for The Voice.  (Note:  there were an unusually large number of 0.1 victories and ties last night, so bragging rights to various slots may shuffle when final numbers are released this afternoon.)

NBC:  Back with a new episode after last week’s clip show, THE VOICE was up almost 50% to a tremendous 4.4 that not only carried the night (more than doubling what Biggest Loser had done in the slot last season), but appeared to lift the network’s entire line-up.  A likable episode of GO ON was up a remarkable 0.7 from last week to 2.8, while somewhat less happily, another awful episode of THE NEW NORMAL was up 0.3 to 2.0.  Both sitcoms narrowly beat their FOX counterparts.  As much as one may begrudge New Normal its victory, it’s enormously satisfying to note that the Voice tide also helped PARENTHOOD, which aired a superb episode written by series creator Jason Katims and climbed 0.4 from last week to tie CBS’s much-vaunted Vegas for the lead in the hour.  If the show can stay at that level, one of the last outposts of quality 1-hours on broadcast TV may survive to see another season, and that’s a good thing.

FOX:  Even with all those NBC victories, the FOX sitcoms held more or less steady.  RAISING HOPE was up a tick to 1.8, BEN AND KATE was down only 0.1 to 1.5 (still not a number that justifies FOX’s quick back-order for the show), NEW GIRL was similarly down only 0.1 to 2.7, and MINDY PROJECT held even at 2.0.

CBS:  VEGAS, as noted, was tied for the lead in its hour by NBC, but its own rating held even at 2.0 from last week, so the show may have found its level.  Both of the NCIS shows were down, 0.4 for the mothership (to 3.3) and 0.2 for the spin-off (to 2.9, still good enough to barely win the hour).

ABC:  A steady if unimpressive night.  After a 1.2 for the 8PM recap (down 0.2 from last week), DANCING WITH THE STARS held at 2.1, while PRIVATE PRACTICE was even at 1.6.

CW:  “Horrible” was the word of the night, as HART OF DIXIE dropped by almost half from last week’s early debut to 0.4, and a stunt run of Joss Whedon’s 2008 DR. HORRIBLE’S SING-ALONG BLOG barely existed at 0.2, showing that Whedon remains a cult figure when the word Avengers isn’t associated with his name.

Some big premieres tonight.  ABC has been promoting NASHVILLE like crazy, as it’s their last chance to claim a big win this fall, and CW desperately needs ARROW to make a splash.  NBC will probably be pleased if CHICAGO FIRE can just get a sampling and not roll over in its hour.

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."