Four Shows on One Broadcast Net Hit Low Marks as the Network’s Prime-Time Ratings Struggle Continues

Dec 5, 2013  •  Post A Comment

Four prime-time series on one network equaled or surpassed low marks Wednesday night, based on Nielsen overnights for the key 18-49 demo, with two of those shows hitting season lows and two others hitting all-time marks. All four shows are on ABC.

TVbytheNumbers.com reports that the Alphabet Network’s "Modern Family" and "The Middle" sank to season lows, while "Back in the Game" fell to a series low and "Super Fun Night" equaled its all-time low.

The good news for ABC: "Modern Family" had enough in the tank to remain the top show on broadcast prime Wednesday night, while "Nashville" remained steady in the 10 p.m. hour. "Modern Family’s" 3.1 average in the 18-49 demo was the best number of the night — even though it was down three-tenths of a point from the show’s previous original — and "Nashville" matched its 1.6 average from two weeks ago.

Additionally, ABC’s overall 1.9 average in adults 18-49 was enough to tie CBS for second place — at least on a night when CBS put up mostly repeats.

ABC’s "The Middle" lost four-tenths from its previous original episode for a season-low 1.9 in viewers 18-49, "Back in the Game" fell two-tenths to a series-low 1.4, and "Super Fun Night" slipped one-tenth to a 1.7, equaling its series low.

Winning the night was NBC, which had a strong showing for its two holiday specials. The two-hour "Saturday Night Live Christmas" delivered a 2.6 average in 18-49, while "Christmas in Rockefeller Center" pulled in a 2.3 — up two-tenths of a point from last year.

CBS’s only original programming was "Survivor," which rose four-tenths from its previous original to a 2.6 average in the 18-49 demo. Repeats of "Criminal Minds" (1.7 average) and "CSI" (1.4) filled out the prime-time lineup.

Fox wound up solidly in fourth place, even with its two-hour "The X Factor" ticking up two-tenths in adults 18-49 to a 1.4 average.

For prime time overall, NBC found itself in first place in viewers 18-49 with a 2.5 average, ahead of CBS and ABC (both with 1.9 averages), Fox (1.4) and CW and Univision (both 0.9). CBS moved to the top in total viewers with 8.9 million, ahead of NBC (8.2 million), ABC (6.4 million), Fox (5.3 million), Univision (2.495 million) and CW (2.482 million).

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