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Nielsen Ratings Thursday, Feb 7: Lipstick Jungle? Get Lost!

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Written By

February 8th, 2008

Scoreboard for Thurs. Feb. 7, 2008 CBS ABC FOX NBC CW
Total Viewers (million) 11.98 10.31 9.04 8.53 3.32
rating/Share: Adults 18-49 3.5/9 4.1/11 2.9/8 2.9/8 1.4/4

CBS netted the most viewers of the evening on the strength of the season premiere of Survivor: Micronesia.  Even with the repeats of CSI, and Without a Trace that followed, CBS still had the most viewers.  While not "great" numbers for Survivor, good enough to win the 8pm hour by a fairly wide margin in both viewers and the 18-49 demo.

ABC won the 18-49 demographic because Lost scored big in the demo.  Last night's episode of Lost was outstanding ("I don't know Miles, how stupid are you?"), but shame on you ABC for deceptive marketing practices! During Lost ABC ran promos for Eli Stone.

"Last week 15 million of you watched..."

Lies, dag gone lies and statistics.  It's true 15 million people watched the Eli Stone premiere last week for about 2 minutes.  But it only "averaged" 11.14 million.  It got worse last night, and could do no better than averaging 9.38 million.  It would seem that the Lost viewers are in no way deceived by ABC's pretty vast stretch of the truth.

Eli Stone isn't going gangbusters.  But it could be worse, it could be NBC, where the premiere of Lipstick Jungle finished in dead last at 10pm.  Although Jungle finished 2nd in the 18-49 demo, a rerun of Without a Trace had the most viewers at 10pm.  Buck up, Eli.  Even though your Disney mothership has no problem at all with lying to the masses as far as the numbers go, Eli DID win the 18-49 demo for the hour, and that's no lie.

FOX had an OK night with a fresh episode of Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? and a repeat of Don't Forget the Lyrics.  CW ran with new episodes of Smallville and Supernatural and averaged over 3 million viewers for the night for the first time since last Friday, but with Friday Night Smackdown! going away, Smallville and America's Next Top Model may be the only things that get the CW averaging over 3 million  in the future. 

Time for a shakeup of executives at the CW -- they have some quality shows (Smallville, Supernatural and One Tree Hill to name a few) but the powers that be fail miserably at getting anyone to watch.

See last night's full details:

Time Network Show Viewers (Millons) 18-49 Rating/Share HH Rating
8:00 CBS Survivor: Micronesia (Premiere) 13.87 4.8/13 8.1
  FOX Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? 9.51 2.7/8 5.7
  ABC Lost (Repeat) 6.5 2.2/6  
  NBC Deal or No Deal 9.31 2.7/7 6.2
  CW Smallville 3.97 1.8/5 2.7
           
9:00 CBS CSI (Repeat) 11.91 3.2/8 7.9
  ABC Lost 15.06 6.4/16 8.8
  NBC Celebrity Apprentice 8.66 3.3/8 5.7
  FOX Dont Forget the Lyrics (Repeat) 8.57 3.1/8 5.1
  CW Supernatural 2.67 1.1/3  
           
10:00 CBS Without a Trace (Repeat) 10.16 2.7/7 6.9
  ABC Eli Stone 9.38 3.6/10 6.0
  NBC Lipstick Jungle (Premiere) 7.62 2.9/8 5.3

Nielsen Ratings Source: Nielsen Media Research. Full night's results available via Marc Berman/Mediaweek.

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  • Ike

    Personally I don’t think that viewers 55+ SHOULD be considered irrelevant, but unfortunately most advertisers DO consider them irrelevant, in terms of prime-time TV anyway. They are absolutely convinced that older viewers rarely switch brands or try new things. Their so-called research supposedly backs this up. Also, they know they can easily reach that audience by advertising much more cheaply during daytime TV and early evening newscasts, on older-skewing cable channels, on talk radio, etc. etc. So, for prime-time, the reality is that 55+ is irrelevant, unfortunately. (Although the importance of younger demos benefits some great shows like “Lost” tremendously, not to mention tons of cutting-edge cable shows.)

    If they valued viewers age 55+, then CBS’s programs would be getting much higher ad rates. If you look at an ad rate chart, you can see that the rates roughly proportionately match the adult 18-49 ratings, making household ratings basically irrelevant to a show’s survival:
    http://adage.com/images/random/0907/2007_Ad_Age_TV_Price_Survey.pdf
    (Note that rates for new programs as of fall 2007 were basically speculative on the parts of the networks and thus subject to “makegoods,” or refunds, to advertisers.)

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Ike, that’s more analysis than I need. We live in a world where the competition is ALL about making more life, and competing to breed with the best (I’m acutely aware of this mostly due to my love of TV making me a miserable failure at most other things!).

    The 60 year old person can not be influenced by the GAME. And the game drives everything, including ridiculous crap like Under Armour blowing wads of cash on the Super Bowl so they can convince children they WILL NOT GET ANY SEX if they are not cool enough to sport UA.

    I’m 45, and I’m not swayed by that AT ALL! In ten years, if it’s possible, I’ll be LESS swayed.

    I know Rena is prone to compare ageism to racism, but it’s a flawed analogy. There are at least a few good reasons to be ageist. There’s never a good reason to be racist.

  • Lisa M

    Robert! That was AWFUL! Why so cynical?

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Lisa, I don’t see it as cynicism so much as realism. I’m all about embracing the truth, even when it hurts. You can ask Bill, I think he’ll vouch for that!

  • http://www.tv.com/users/vendbien/profile.php# Jon V

    Was just kinda kiddin on the square with the 'baby boomer' quip but both Ike and Robert make good points.

    Advertisers hit me with their best shot on Golf boadcasts, PTI and CNBC. I guess they know what they're doin' cuz that's what I watch. It depends on what you're selling, I guess.

    But I also love L&O, 2&1/2 and The Big Bang Theory, which makes me hard to pigeonhole. I don't think there are a lot of 'ad actuaries' staying up late to 'catch me where I live.'

    Thanx, Lisa, for trying to take Robert to task for us – but he is keeping it real and I get it. My feelings are NOT hurt by NOT getting pitched to in my strike zone. I consider it an 'intentional walk' cuz I'm a dangerous hitter.

  • http://www.tv.com/users/vendbien/profile.php# Jon V

    Was just kinda kiddin on the square with the ‘baby boomer’ quip but both Ike and Robert make good points.

    Advertisers hit me with their best shot on Golf boadcasts, PTI and CNBC. I guess they know what they’re doin’ cuz that’s what I watch. It depends on what you’re selling, I guess.

    But I also love L&O, 2&1/2 and The Big Bang Theory, which makes me hard to pigeonhole. I don’t think there are a lot of ‘ad actuaries’ staying up late to ‘catch me where I live.’

    Thanx, Lisa, for trying to take Robert to task for us – but he is keeping it real and I get it. My feelings are NOT hurt by NOT getting pitched to in my strike zone. I consider it an ‘intentional walk’ cuz I’m a dangerous hitter.

  • Kat

    I like Eli Stone but it gives me a toothache. Its a show I would expect to be on 8pm on a Sunday night.

    I was prepared to hate Lipstick Jungle and I was surprised that I liked it. I'm going to be looking forward to the next episode and watch it like a guilty pleasure. Too bad I can't imagine admitting to my friends that I'm actually watching it.

  • Kat

    I like Eli Stone but it gives me a toothache. Its a show I would expect to be on 8pm on a Sunday night.

    I was prepared to hate Lipstick Jungle and I was surprised that I liked it. I’m going to be looking forward to the next episode and watch it like a guilty pleasure. Too bad I can’t imagine admitting to my friends that I’m actually watching it.

  • Ike

    Jon said: “Advertisers hit me with their best shot on Golf boadcasts, PTI and CNBC. …But I also love L&O, 2&1/2 and The Big Bang Theory, which makes me hard to pigeonhole.”

    Right, so why should they pay extra to reach you during L&O or CBS sitcoms when they can advertise more cheaply during golf or on CNBC? Thus, the CBS sitcoms don't get really high ad rates.

    Robert, you might be even more cynical than me. Bravo! However, you still have plenty of readers of this site who mistakenly believe that the household ratings and total viewer numbers matter to a show's survival. I wonder if there's some standard disclaimer that can be appended on most pages to explain to fans that they should really pay more attention to those 18-49s. (And 18-34s on the rare occasion that those are available.) Also, you might want to keep this in mind for those “Renew or Cancel” articles. For instance, from a business standpoint, Women's Murder Club was always a solid cancel when considering its demo numbers. Without the strike, it would've been yanked off the air by November.

  • Ike

    Jon said: “Advertisers hit me with their best shot on Golf boadcasts, PTI and CNBC. …But I also love L&O, 2&1/2 and The Big Bang Theory, which makes me hard to pigeonhole.”

    Right, so why should they pay extra to reach you during L&O or CBS sitcoms when they can advertise more cheaply during golf or on CNBC? Thus, the CBS sitcoms don’t get really high ad rates.

    Robert, you might be even more cynical than me. Bravo! However, you still have plenty of readers of this site who mistakenly believe that the household ratings and total viewer numbers matter to a show’s survival. I wonder if there’s some standard disclaimer that can be appended on most pages to explain to fans that they should really pay more attention to those 18-49s. (And 18-34s on the rare occasion that those are available.) Also, you might want to keep this in mind for those “Renew or Cancel” articles. For instance, from a business standpoint, Women’s Murder Club was always a solid cancel when considering its demo numbers. Without the strike, it would’ve been yanked off the air by November.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Ike, it didn't used to be rare that we'd get the 18-34 (and 25-54) data, though we haven't seen it since the week ending 1/27.

    while I agree the entire span between 18-54 is more important to the networks than the 55+ viewers and we've been known to express the sentiment, I'm not sure standard boiler plate is required but I am open to it if more people suggest it.

    We give both the 18-49 demo and total viewers focus with every overnight post, and we provide rankings by total viewers and the demo(s) weekly.

    Some have suggested an “all in one ranking”, but there are some limitations. If we include 18-49 ranking for the top 20 most viewed shows, it won't be the top 20 of the 18-49. We could still do both, but due to current web design we're limited as far as the # of columns we can have in a table without running out of space and are trying to balance ease of reading the data and providing as much data as possible.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Ike, it didn’t used to be rare that we’d get the 18-34 (and 25-54) data, though we haven’t seen it since the week ending 1/27.

    while I agree the entire span between 18-54 is more important to the networks than the 55+ viewers and we’ve been known to express the sentiment, I’m not sure standard boiler plate is required but I am open to it if more people suggest it.

    We give both the 18-49 demo and total viewers focus with every overnight post, and we provide rankings by total viewers and the demo(s) weekly.

    Some have suggested an “all in one ranking”, but there are some limitations. If we include 18-49 ranking for the top 20 most viewed shows, it won’t be the top 20 of the 18-49. We could still do both, but due to current web design we’re limited as far as the # of columns we can have in a table without running out of space and are trying to balance ease of reading the data and providing as much data as possible.

  • Nighthawk

    Well, I used to like Supernatural, but now it seems they've made it “all comedy – all the time”……and the storyline has all but vanished. :(

  • Nighthawk

    Well, I used to like Supernatural, but now it seems they’ve made it “all comedy – all the time”……and the storyline has all but vanished. :(

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