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ABC Family's Secret Life Smacksdown CW and 90210

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September 10th, 2008

The mid-season finale of ABC Family's The Secret Life of an American Teenager beat CW's 90210 resoundingly from a numbers perspective and by double and triple digit percentages among the key women 18-34 years old, women 12-34 years old and all people aged 12-34 demographics. Secret Life pulled in 4.5 million viewers vs. 90210's 3.2 million, beat 90210 by a couple hundred thousand among women 18-34 and doubled 90210 among 12-34 year old females (2.4 million to 1.2 million).

More interesting to me perhaps is that while CW claimed victory among 18-34 women and 12-34 year old women, that was only versus its broadcast network competition. I find it at least a little bit intriguing that in these "key" demographics, a cable net outperformed every show aired by ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC and the CW.

Here's the full press release from ABC Family, there's a fair bit of smacktalk and plenty of jabs at the CW -- even Gossip Girl (gasp). I'm leaving all the gloating sub-headlines in, mostly for their entertainment value, but there's a fair bit of data in them and after you scroll past them.

Ratings Highlights for Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Final National Ratings

ABC Family's "The Secret Life of the American Teenager" Wraps as TV's No. 1 Scripted Series During its 11-week Run in Viewers 12-34 and Females 12-34, and Cable's Top-Rated Scripted Series in Adults 18-34 and Women 18-34

The Freshman Mid-Season Finale of "The Secret Life of the American Teenager" is Tuesday's No. 1 TV Program in Women 18-34 and Key 12-34s, Topping Week Two of CW's "90210" by Double and Triple-Digit Percentages

Impressively, "Secret Life's" Finale Stands as ABC Family's No. 1 Telecast of
All Time in Adults 18-34, Women 18-34, Viewers 12-34 and Females 12-34

Hitting Series Highs in Total Viewers, Adults 18-49 and Women 18-49, Tuesday's "Secret Life" Stands as the Net's No. 1 Original Series Telecast Ever

Last Night's "Secret Life" Finale Rates as Ad-Supported Cable's No. 1 Scripted Series Telecast of the 2007/08 Season in Viewers 12-34 and Females 12-34

In an Impressive Feat, "Secret Life's" 1A Closer Beats Every Episode of CW's "Gossip Girl" in Total Viewers and Key 18-34, 18-49 and 12-34 Demos

Standing as Tuesday's No. 1 Cable Program Each Week During its Season 1A in Females 12-34, Teens 12-17 and Female Teens, "Secret Life's"

Victory This Week Marks the 11th Consecutive Week at No. 1

"Secret Life's" Finale Posts ABC Family's Best Tuesday Numbers at 8 O'Clock in the Net's History in Total Viewers and Across 18-34, 18-49 and 12-34 Demos

"The Secret Life of the American Teenager" (8:00-9:00 p.m.)

Hitting series highs for its freshman mid-season finale in Total Viewers and across all key demographics, ABC Family's No. 1 original series ever, "The Secret Life of the American Teenager," wraps as TV's No. 1 scripted series over its 11-week run in Viewers 12-34 (2.5 million) and Females 12-34 (2.1 million), and cable's top-rated scripted series in Adults 18-34 (1.2 million) and Women 18-34 (918,000). In addition, in Women 18-34, "Secret Life" ranked No. 3 among all scripted TV programs during its run.

[Editors Note: "The Secret Life of the American Teenager is set to return in January 09 with 12 all-new episodes.]

  • "Secret Life" stood as Tuesday's No. 1 TV program in Women 18-34, Viewers 12-34 and Females 12-34, overshadowing Week Two of CW's high-profile "90210" by double and triple digit percentages in the core demos, beating the competitor by 18% in Women 18-34 (1.3 million vs. 1.1 million), by 67% in Viewers 12-34 (3.0 million vs. 1.8 million), while doubling delivery in Females 12-34 (2.4 million vs. 1.2 million). Moreover, "Secret Life" was Tuesday's No. 1 cable program in Total Viewers (4.5 million) and Adults 18-34 (1.7 million), topping "90210" by 41% (3.2 million) and by 21% (1.4 million), respectively.
  • Also impressive, with series highs across all targets, "Secret Life's" closer stood as the net's No. 1 telecast on record in Adults 18-34 (1.7 million), Women 18-34 (1.3 million), Viewers 12-34 (3.0 million) and Females 12-34 (2.4 million). Additionally, in Total Viewers (4.5 million), Adults 18-49 (2.3 million) and Women 18-49 (1.8 million), Tuesday's finale qualified as the net's most-watched original series telecast ever.
  • "Secret Life's" 1A finale now stands as ad-supported cable's No. 1 scripted series telecast of the soon-to-conclude 2007/08 season in Viewers 12-34 (3.0 million) and Females 12-34 (2.4 million), while its 8/5/08 episode still ranks as ad-supported cable's highest rated series telecast among Female Teens (1.4 million) since at least October 2000.
  • "Secret Life's" finale garnered ABC Family's best Tuesday delivery at 8 o'clock in the net's history in Total Viewers (4.5 million), Adults 18-34 (1.7 million), Adults 18-49 (2.3 million) and Viewers 12-34 (3.0 million).
  • For the 9th consecutive week, "Secret Life" is Tuesday's No. 1 cable program in Women 18-34 (1.3 million) and Women 18-49 (1.8 million), making it the day's No. 1 program 9 times during its 11 week run.
  • During its 11-week run (July 1 - September 9), "Secret Life" positioned as Tuesday's No. 1 cable program each week in Females 12-34, Teens 12-17 and Female Teens.
  • In an also impressive feat, "Secret Life's" 1A closer surpassed every episode of CW's "Gossip Girl" to date in Total Viewers, Women 18-34, Adults 18-49, Women 18-49, Viewers 12-34 and Females 12-34.
  • Head to head against Week Two of CW's "90210," "Secret Life" overshadowed the high-profile series by 41% in Total Viewers (4.5 million vs. 3.2 million), by 21% in Adults 18-34 (1.7 million vs. 1.4 million), by 18% in Women 18-34 (1.3 million vs. 1.1 million), by 67% in Viewers 12-34 (3.0 million vs. 1.8 million), and doubled the delivery in Females 12-34 (2.4 vs. 1.2 million).
  • Clinching another dominant victory versus all cable at 8 o'clock for its mid-season finale, throughout 1A on average, "Secret Life" dominated its competition, surpassing runner-up Fox News by 36% in Total Viewers (3.8 million vs. 2.8 million), and TBS by 90% in Adults 18-34 (1.2 million vs. 632,000), by 85% in Adults 18-49 (1.8 million vs. 971,000) and 172% in Viewers 12-34 (2.5 million vs. 920,000).
  • During the first half of its freshman season, "Secret Life" more than tripled year-ago time period levels in Total Viewers (247%, 3.8 million vs. 1.1 million) and Adults 18-49 (250%, 1.8 million vs. 505,000), and more than quadrupled in Adults 18-34 (327%, 1.2 million vs. 289,000) and Viewers 12-34 (2.5 million vs. 525,000).

Source: Nielsen Media Research (National Ratings, 9/9/08, Live + Same Day; Season-to-date, Most Current, "Secret Life" (7/1/08-9/9/08); Year-Ago, Live + 7).

 
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