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ABC's Thursday Night: Two Series Premieres, Two Flops TVbytheNumbers

ABC quietly rolled out two new series Thursday night -- the network may not have intended to do it quietly, but that’s how it turned out, if the Nielsen overnights are an indication.

The network’s new singing competition “Duets” had a two-hour premiere, and boy did it ever fall short of other recent premieres in the genre. TVbytheNumbers.com reports that the broadcast earned a lackluster 1.7 average rating in the key 18-49 demo. Looking at results for other recent premieres in the genre, NBC’s “The Voice” had a 4.6 on opening night while Fox’s “The X Factor” pulled in a 4.4 average.

ABC’s other new show, the drama “Rookie Blue,” debuted at 10 p.m. and probably would have been happy with “Duets’” number. “Blue” managed only a 1.4, trailing a repeat of CBS’s “The Mentalist” (1.5) but easily outpacing NBC’s dormant “Awake” (0.9).

The night’s top show was Fox’s “So You Think You Can Dance,” with the two-hour season premiere pulling a 2.4 in 18-49 -- down 27% from last year's premiere, but enough to give Fox the overall win on a lackluster night across the board. Fox’s 2.4 average for prime time topped an all-repeat night for CBS, which tied ABC for second place with averages of 1.6. Univision scraped its way to fourth place with a 1.2, while NBC -- which went with repeats, other than “Awake” -- mired deep in fifth place with a 0.9.

Things flipped around in total viewers, with CBS’s all-repeat lineup winning the night with 7.6 million, ABC second with 6.5 million, Fox third with 6.2 million, Univision a distant fourth with 3.2 million and NBC again in fifth place with 2.9 million.