CBS’s Night of Reality Shows Wins Prime Time; New ABC Show Opens Strong

Sep 25, 2014  •  Post A Comment

On a night when one CBS reality franchise handed off Wednesday prime time to another, the Eye Network claimed a narrow ratings win in the key 18-49 demo, based on Nielsen overnights.

TVbytheNumbers.com reports that CBS’s lineup consisting of its 90-minute “Survivor” season premiere and its 90-minute “Big Brother” season finale edged ABC to win the night, with a 2.6 average rating for prime time in 18-49 to ABC’s 2.4. ABC’s lineup was paced by “Modern Family,” which averaged a 3.7 to come in as the top show on broadcast prime.

NBC’s slate of three dramas — including the second outing for its freshman show “The Mysteries of Laura” — was strong enough for a win in total viewers in a close three-way race, with the Peacock averaging 9.47 million to CBS’s 8.32 million and ABC’s 7.90 million.

In the 18-49 demo, the “Survivor” premiere was up one-tenth of a point from last year’s fall premiere with a 2.7 average rating, and “Big Brother” — which was just picked up by the network for another two cycles — was up four-tenths from last week’s installment with a 2.6.

ABC’s new comedy “black-ish,” leading out from “Modern Family” at 9:30 p.m., had a strong premiere, averaging a 3.3 in viewers 18-49 — down just four-tenths from its high-profile lead-in. Perhaps even more encouraging for ABC, “black-ish” retained almost all of “Modern Family’s” audience in total viewers, averaging 10.79 million, down just slightly from “Modern’s” 10.93 million.

Elsewhere on ABC, the lineup was mostly down from a year ago. The season premiere of “The Middle” pulled a 2.1 in 18-49, off from a 2.5 last season; “The Goldbergs” managed a 2.3 in the show’s season and time period premiere, down from a 3.1 for the series premiere; “Modern Family’s” 3.7 average represented a fall-off from a 4.2 for the hour-long premiere a year ago; and “Nashville’s” season premiere generated only a 1.5, off from a 2.0 for last year’s premiere.

NBC saw “The Mysteries of Laura” droop from the 2.0 delivered for last week’s series premiere, with Wednesday’s outing settling for a 1.5 in adults 18-49. The season premiere of “Law & Order: SVU” chalked up a 2.1, down from a 2.7 a year ago, when the show aired a two-hour premiere; and the season premiere of “Chicago PD” slipped just a bit, from a 2.0 for the series premiere back in January to a 1.9.

Fox settled for a distant fourth place behind its Big Four rivals, with “Hell’s Kitchen” dipping from a 1.4 last week in 18-49 to a 1.3, while “Red Band Society” saw significant erosion in its second outing, losing three-tenths of a point from last week’s premiere to register a 1.0 average.

For prime time overall, CBS’s 2.6 average was the best of the bunch in the 18-49 demo, ahead of ABC (2.4 average), NBC (1.9), Fox (1.2), Univision (1.1) and CW (0.5). NBC topped the list in total viewers with 9.47 million, followed by CBS (8.32 million), ABC (7.90 million), Fox (3.52 million), Univision (3.00 million) and CW (1.45 million).


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