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Friday Night Lights: Renew or Cancel?

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Written By

November 5th, 2007

fridaynightlights.jpg

UPDATE: Friday Night Lights has been picked up by DirecTV and NBC through the 2010-11 Season.

 

A cult fan and critic darling last season, but not a viewer favorite [#133 in HHs, and #127 in 18-49 viewers], NBC's Friday Night Lights [Friday 9PM Eastern] returned this season hoping to build its viewership.

Once again we ask, Renew or Cancel?

Friday Night Light's Rank among NBC Shows, All Shows

Date Viewer Rank among NBC Shows Viewer Rank among all Shows
10/5 #19 of 23 #68 of 234
10/12 #19 of 23 #77 of 226
10/19 #20 of 24 #79 of 226
10/26 #18 of 22 #79 of 225

This season, Friday Night Lights has typically finished at the bottom of all non-rerun NBC shows. Among all broadcast shows, it has typically finished behind every ABC, CBS, and Fox first run shows with the exception of Next Great American Band. It has regularly been beating CW shows.

How is it doing against its competition on Wednesday?

Friday Night Light's Viewership and Rankings for its 9PM Friday Timeslot.

Date Viewers (Rank) Adults 18-49 (Rank) Adults 18-34 (Rank) Adults 25-54 (Rank)
10/5 6.37m (2) 2.78m (2) 1.04m (3) 3.03m (2)
10/12 5.46m (4) 2.27m (5) 0.93m (4) 2.75m (4)
10/19 5.37m (3) 2.47m (4) 0.92m (2) 2.83m (3)
10/26* 5.27m (4) 2.15m (4) 0.87m (3) 2.29m (4)
11/2** 5.45m      

Friday Night Lights audience started low and has continued to drift downward in all demo categories.

It consistently finishes behind ABC's Women's Murder Club and CBS's Moonlighting in all categories, and behind Univision's Destilando Amor in the youth demos.

Friday Night Light's Lead-In Audience Lost from Deal or No Deal

Date Lead-In Audience Lost
10/5 -24%
10/12 -46%
10/19 -41%
10/26* -49%
11/2** -41%

Friday Night Lights follows one of NBC's biggest shows, Deal or No Deal, but, except for the debut week, almost half the audience tunes out before watching.

Conclusions

Negatives

  1. NBC's lowest rated first run timeslot.
  2. Nearly the lowest rated show among all ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox shows.
  3. Audience still trending down in all demographic categories.
  4. Consistently finishes 3rd or 4th in all demo categories vs. its timeslot competition.

Positives

  1. Whatever caused NBC to renew it after the end of last season.

Verdict: Turn out the lights. Solid Cancel.

The writers strike begins on 11/5. I would not expect FNL to return after all its available episodes are telecast.

 

Wondering about other shows? Check our all our Renew or Cancel? posts.

________________________________________________________

*Live, all other data is Live+SD

** From Fast Overnight Data

Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2007 Nielsen Media Research, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 
  • Norrie

    FNL is geard to a certain demographic – I have tried to get into it, but I find it a little boring because it is totally focused on football and little else. The people always seem to be under so much angst. It would do better on the CW network or Family network. It is definitely a teenage drama.

  • Norrie

    FNL is geard to a certain demographic – I have tried to get into it, but I find it a little boring because it is totally focused on football and little else. The people always seem to be under so much angst. It would do better on the CW network or Family network. It is definitely a teenage drama.

  • Norrie

    FNL is geard to a certain demographic – I have tried to get into it, but I find it a little boring because it is totally focused on football and little else. The people always seem to be under so much angst. It would do better on the CW network or Family network. It is definitely a teenage drama.

  • Norrie

    FNL is geard to a certain demographic – I have tried to get into it, but I find it a little boring because it is totally focused on football and little else. The people always seem to be under so much angst. It would do better on the CW network or Family network. It is definitely a teenage drama.

  • Norrie

    FNL is geard to a certain demographic – I have tried to get into it, but I find it a little boring because it is totally focused on football and little else. The people always seem to be under so much angst. It would do better on the CW network or Family network. It is definitely a teenage drama.

  • Frank

    It’s a football show – why run it on Friday’s nites when high school football is being played.

  • Frank

    It’s a football show – why run it on Friday’s nites when high school football is being played.

  • Frank

    It’s a football show – why run it on Friday’s nites when high school football is being played.

  • Frank

    It’s a football show – why run it on Friday’s nites when high school football is being played.

  • Frank

    It’s a football show – why run it on Friday’s nites when high school football is being played.

  • Robert Seidman

    I’m with Frank — other than having Friday in it’s name because its a show about High School football on Fridays, I do not think it’s a good idea to actually compete with High School football!

    Moving the night it airs is probably a good idea, but I think the show needs to be on either at 8p or 9p. Since it skews young, airing it at 10p might be too late.

  • Robert Seidman

    I’m with Frank — other than having Friday in it’s name because its a show about High School football on Fridays, I do not think it’s a good idea to actually compete with High School football!

    Moving the night it airs is probably a good idea, but I think the show needs to be on either at 8p or 9p. Since it skews young, airing it at 10p might be too late.

  • Robert Seidman

    I’m with Frank — other than having Friday in it’s name because its a show about High School football on Fridays, I do not think it’s a good idea to actually compete with High School football!

    Moving the night it airs is probably a good idea, but I think the show needs to be on either at 8p or 9p. Since it skews young, airing it at 10p might be too late.

  • Robert Seidman

    I’m with Frank — other than having Friday in it’s name because its a show about High School football on Fridays, I do not think it’s a good idea to actually compete with High School football!

    Moving the night it airs is probably a good idea, but I think the show needs to be on either at 8p or 9p. Since it skews young, airing it at 10p might be too late.

  • Robert Seidman

    I’m with Frank — other than having Friday in it’s name because its a show about High School football on Fridays, I do not think it’s a good idea to actually compete with High School football!

    Moving the night it airs is probably a good idea, but I think the show needs to be on either at 8p or 9p. Since it skews young, airing it at 10p might be too late.

  • Jake

    Friday and Saturday prime time is like the kiss of death to any show. Maybe put it on before football on Sunday and cut out Keith Olbermann from the pre game.

  • Jake

    Friday and Saturday prime time is like the kiss of death to any show. Maybe put it on before football on Sunday and cut out Keith Olbermann from the pre game.

  • Jake

    Friday and Saturday prime time is like the kiss of death to any show. Maybe put it on before football on Sunday and cut out Keith Olbermann from the pre game.

  • Jake

    Friday and Saturday prime time is like the kiss of death to any show. Maybe put it on before football on Sunday and cut out Keith Olbermann from the pre game.

  • Jake

    Friday and Saturday prime time is like the kiss of death to any show. Maybe put it on before football on Sunday and cut out Keith Olbermann from the pre game.

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