Gossip Girl: Always the Nielsen Ratings Bridesmaid?

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July 30th, 2008

'Secret Life' Gets Better Ratings than 'Gossip Girl'

Any day that ends in a 'y' is a good day to bash the CW and Gossip Girl. This time it's not me doing the bashing, but our friend James Hibberd at the Hollywood Reporter on his THR blog, 'the live feed'. Last night's ABC Family channel airing of Secret Life of an American Teenager drew 3.6 million total viewers, 1.6 million of them in the 18-49 demographic (and we imagine it did quite nicely in the 12-17 demo as well), prompting Mr. Hibberd to write:

That means the fifth episode of "Secret Life" outperformed any given episode of the CW's "Gossip Girl" in total viewers and bested the "Gossip" season average by 11% -- despite being on a cable network in the summer instead of a broadcast network during the regular season. (Is this a fair comparison? Not for "ABC Family," but they certainly don't mind.)

So a show without the New York Magazine covers, tons of press coverage and hardly any buzz at all, on cable, during the summer draws more viewers. In fairness to Gossip Girl, I never have received e-mails from teenagers from Soho to Singapore telling me they download the torrents for Secret Life as soon as they become available, at least not yet. I have seen a few of those e-mails from Gossip Girl fans.

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