All-Time Low for NBC Series on a Tough Night for the Peacock

Feb 20, 2013  •  Post A Comment

On a night when NBC finished a distant fifth among the broadcast networks in the key 18-49 demo, based on Nielsen overnights, NBC’s “Smash” sank to its lowest number ever.

TVbytheNumbers.com reports that “Smash” was down 25% in viewers 18-49 from its season premiere two weeks ago, managing only a series-low 0.9 average rating and placing third in the 10 p.m. slot.

Elsewhere on NBC the numbers were also grim: Two episodes of “Betty White’s Off Their Rockers” delivered the network’s best demo ratings of the night, a 1.3 in 18-49 (down 7% from the previous original episode) at 8 p.m. and a 1.4 (also down 7%) at 8:30. “Go On” was down 15% to a 1.1 and “The New Normal” fell 9% to a 1.0.

NBC wasn’t the only network with ratings problems. CW’s series premiere of “Cult” mustered only a 0.3 in the 18-49 demo, and ABC’s season debut for “Body of Proof” had to settle for a 1.2 — equaling the show’s all-time low while plummeting 45% from the season premiere back in September 2011 and coming in 37% below the season finale back in April.

Fox was down across the board too, with “New Girl” registering a 15% drop from its previous original episode two weeks ago and settling for a 2.2 in adults 18-49. “The Mindy Project” sank 16% to a 1.6, and “Raising Hope” slipped 6% to a 1.5.

CBS couldn’t buck the downtrend, either, even while winning the night, as two of its three dramas were down. “NCIS” dipped 5% from its previous original episode two weeks ago to a 3.5 — still the best number of the night in the 18-49 demo. “NCIS: Los Angeles” was down 13% to a 2.7, while “Vegas” held steady with a 1.5.

For prime time overall, CBS claimed an easy win with a 2.6 average rating in viewers 18-49, topping ABC (1.8), Fox (1.7), Univision (1.7), NBC (1.1) and CW (0.4). The margin was even greater in total viewers, where CBS led with 15.6 million to ABC’s 6.6 million, Univision’s 4.0 million, NBC’s 3.7 million, Fox’s 3.5 million and CW’s 1.2 million.


  1. Its nbc i don’t know why they just don’t hang it up already Detroit area Boyctts NBC!!

  2. NBC must have a continally revolving door of exits with its programming executives. This is horrendous. Robert Wright would never have tolerated this level of less than mediocrity. I wonder if they will try to bring back Warren Littlefield or any of the old guard since this seems to be the case in other areas of the business. “Arsenio” anyone?

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