Lighten Up Desperate Housewives Fans & How I Look at Numbers

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April 15th, 2008

Based on a couple of e-mails I got, you'd have thought I wrote that Desperate Housewives stunk and was well on its way to being cancelled.  With 16 million live plus same-day DVR viewers in the ovenight results for Sunday it was by far and away the most watched show on television Sunday night and the most watched show among 18-49 year olds.

But the numbers were still down significantly from its last airing in early January and well below its season average.  Did a hiatus of over three months hurt it?  Maybe.  It didn't seem to hurt CSI, but as we know CSI skews a bit older than DH.

Sometimes absence doesn't really make the heart grow fonder, it just makes you forget.  Did the notion that Sunday's episode didn't involve a natural disaster impact the numbers?  Perhaps.  But enough to send it to its lowest ratings of the year?

I know that some of you want to compare to last year's ratings, and that's fine.  I might be more out of the Janet Jackson "what have you done for me lately?" school of thinking.  But I think the comparisons to last year in this case are a bit silly.  Here's why...

Let's say last April that I had $10 to my name.  Fast-foward to early Janauary where I win a lottery where I clear $1 million.  Let's then say I act like a dope and gamble it all away and in early April I have $10.  I can tell myself, "well, I have as much money as I did last year!"  But I'd just be telling myself that to make myself feel better.  I have no doubt that if it went down like that, I would do just that -- it's a very human way to look at things.

But it's also a very silly way to look at things.

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