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Idol, Grey's, House, Lost, Desperate Housewives and The Office Lead Total DVR Viewing

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May 19th, 2008

NBC\'s The OfficeAfter American Idol in the top spot, Grey's Anatomy, House, LOST, Desperate Housewives and The Office were the most DVR viewed shows for the week ending May 4, 2008. The Office's DVR viewing is still amazing to me. Consider that the show ahead of it (Desperate Housewives) had 9+ million more viewers but The Office only had 35,000 fewer DVR viewers. And with 14+ million fewer viewers than CSI it had almost 200K more DVR viewers.

As ever, the % of DVR viewing that comes the same night that the shows aired was higher for unscripted program than scripted programming. I've dubbed any scripted show with over 50% of its viewing occurring the same day as the "Water Cooler" shows, and LOST is losing its "must talk about it at work the next day" status. Even though 33% of its overall viewing is coming via DVR, only 31% of that DVR viewing occurred the same night it aired.

The water cooler shows for the week were Desperate Housewives, and The Office, and that's it! If I lowered the bar to 40% same day DVR viewing, House, Grey's Anatomy, Two and a Half Men, NCIS, Bones, Brothers & Sisters and How I Met Your Mother would all make the list. CSI: Miami is definitely not water cooler material. While almost two million DVR the show, only slightly more than one out of five who watch on DVR watch it the same night. CSI: Miami and Law & Order: SVU are must DVR for many, but the least water cooler-y of any scripted shows on this list.

CBS is the king of "must DVR" shows, with eight shows on this list, followed by FOX with five, ABC with four and NBC with three.

While only one show on cable (at least not via numbers we have access to) usually tops the one million DVR mark (The Hills), thirty-eight broadcast shows had a million or more DVR viewers, including #38, Moonlight, with 1.004 million!

Top 20 DVR Broadcast Shows for the week ending May 4, 2008:

Rank Show Net Live+7 (000) Live (000) DVR Viewers (000) % increase from live Live+SD (000) % SD
1 American Idol-TUESDAY FOX 26,248 22,411 3,837 17.1% 25,094 69.92%
2 GREY'S ANATOMY-THU 9PM ABC 17,522 13,819 3,703 26.8% 15,313 40.35%
3 HOUSE-MON 9P FOX 16,754 13,232 3,522 26.6% 14,641 40.01%
4 LOST ABC 12,946 9,715 3,231 33.3% 10,726 31.29%
5 Desperate Housewives ABC 18,016 15,344 2,672 17.4% 16,757 52.88%
6 OFFICE NBC 8,929 6,292 2,637 41.9% 7,752 55.37%
7 American Idol-WEDNESDAY FOX 23,656 21,080 2,576 12.2% 22,800 66.77%
8 CSI CBS 19,497 17,115 2,382 13.9% 18,012 37.66%
9 SURVIVOR: MICRONESIA CBS 13,214 10,920 2,294 21.0% 12,320 61.03%
10 Criminal Minds CBS 14,384 12,214 2,170 17.8% 13,030 37.60%
11 Two and a Half Men CBS 14,052 11,940 2,112 17.7% 12,915 46.16%
12 NCIS CBS 15,860 13,773 2,087 15.2% 14,763 47.44%
13 BONES-MON 8P FOX 10,905 8,906 1,999 22.4% 9,799 44.67%
14 CSI: MIAMI CBS 15,399 13,448 1,951 14.5% 13,880 22.14%
15 Law And Order:SVU NBC 13,727 11,867 1,860 15.7% 12,313 23.98%
16 HELL'S KITCHEN FOX 12,799 10,980 1,819 16.6% 11,940 52.78%
17 MEDIUM NBC 10,788 9,008 1,780 19.8% 9,683 37.92%
18 BROTHERS & SISTERS ABC 11,462 9,739 1,723 17.7% 10,463 42.02%
19 NUMB3RS CBS 11,491 9,921 1,570 15.8% 10,328 25.92%
20 How I Met Your Mother CBS 9,710 8,146 1,564 19.2% 8,844 44.63%

This table ranks broadcast shows with the most absolute DVR viewing. For a list of the top twenty shows with the highest % increases due to DVR viewing check out this post.

Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2008 Nielsen Media Research, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 
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