Thursday Prime Time: Three New Broadcast Series Premiere

Oct 3, 2014  •  Post A Comment

One problem for new series trying to establish a foothold on Thursday nights is the presence of ratings juggernaut “Thursday Night Football” on CBS — which may be one reason all three of the new broadcast programs premiering last night — two on NBC and one on Fox — delivered average ratings in the 1.2-1.3 range in the key 18-49 demo, based on Nielsen overnights.

CBS’s Vikings-Packers matchup, meanwhile, rolled to a preliminary 4.4 average in the demo as CBS easily won the night.

TVbytheNumbers.com reports that NBC’s new comedy “Bad Judge,” rolling out at 9 p.m., settled for a 1.3 average in 18-49. As a comparison, that number was 41% below last year’s fall premiere of the short-lived “Michael J. Fox Show,” which delivered a 2.2.

Leading out from “Bad Judge,” NBC’s series premiere of the comedy “A to Z” lost a little bit of “Judge’s” audience, slipping to a 1.2 average in viewers 18-49.

NBC led off prime time with “The Biggest Loser,” which equaled the 1.3 average in 18-49 that the show had last week, and that was a series low. Wrapping up prime time was “Parenthood,” which also had a 1.3.

Fox broke out its new series “Gracepoint,” which lost some of the audience of its “Bones” lead-in. “Bones” dipped 6% from last week’s premiere to a 1.5 average in 18-49, while “Gracepoint” settled for a 1.2 — 29% below what “Rake” delivered for its premiere last year.

While no match for CBS’s football coverage, ABC’s drama lineup is looking like the class of the field among this season’s scripted Thursday night offerings, even as all three Shonda Rhimes-related programs lost ground. “Scandal” did the best of the three, delivering a 3.3 average in the 18-49 demo, with the new show “How to Get Away With Murder” close behind with a 3.2. “Murder” lost 18% from last week’s series premiere.

“Grey’s Anatomy” fell 16% from last week’s season premiere to a series-low 2.6 in adults 18-49.

For prime time overall, CBS’s 4.2 average was easily the best number in the 18-49 demo, ahead of ABC (3.0 average), Fox and NBC (both with 1.3 averages), Univision (1.1) and CW (0.6). CBS also finished on top in total viewers, averaging 12.4 million to lead ABC (10.4 million), Fox (5.6 million), NBC (4.8 million), Univision (2.9 million) and CW (1.4 million).

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One Comment

  1. PTI (ESPN) had this to say about Thursday night football last night. The only ones that like Thursday night football are the fans, and the NFL, because of all the money they make . The players absolutely hate Thursday Night Football. One of the things they pointed out is that the players really tired, and that’s why every game on Thursday night has been completely lopsided. I don’t know if that’s true, but it would seem to make sense. the other thing is, last year it was only on the NFL Network and drew less than 3 million people, I believe. This year CBS picking up either 6 or 8 games, it has reached the mainstream, thus affecting all of the shows across from it. It leaves a lot of things open for debate, except for one thing, the players all absolutely hate playing on Thursday night.

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