Early Ratings: Dancing Loved; Heroes, Sarah Connor and Denny Crane, not so much

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September 23rd, 2008

Update: Bill will get the full numbers up shortly but:

  • Heroes 9p-11p: 9.89 million (ouch, but it still performed very very well in the 18-49 demo ~5.0 -it should also be noted that Heroes crushed the field in the 18-34 demographic)
  • TSCC: 5.816 million (2.3 in 18-49 demo)
  • 2.5 Men: 14.926 million (5.3 demo)
  • Gossip Girl: 3.35 million
  • CSI Miami: 16.866 million w/a 5.1 in the demo
  • DWTS: 21.12 million from 8p-10p/5.4 in demo

The early ratings buzz for Monday is in, and there are no surprises for me, save perhaps CSI: Miami, which pulled an 11/18 (rating/share) at 10pm. Keep in mind these early metered market ratings are subject to change even vs. the fast affiliate overnight ratings which follow them shortly thereafter.

Unsurprisingly a two hour Dancing with the Stars led the night with a 13.5/20 share between 8pm-10pm and equally unsurprisingly, almost all of them left when Boston Legal came on, it dipped to a 5.8/10 at 10pm.

CBS had all new episodes and Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother seemed in line with last year. With 5.6/9 and 5.9/9 respectively. Two and a Half Men pulled a 9.0/13, but it will likely dominate among 18-49 year olds once we see the fast affiliate data. Worst Week then dipped to a 6.4/9, which if that holds is worse than Rules of Engagement and The New Adventures of Old Christine did in that slot.

Now for the disappointments: first, I didn't love the two hour Heroes opener which pulled a 6.4/10 from 9p-11p. If that holds, that may be less viewers than last year's finale -- 11.06 million, but that was on December 3, a long time ago -- and it will certainly be less than last year's premiere which scored 16.97 million on a 9.9/14 household rating/share. I knew I wasn't going to love this and while I am not TV critic, it's plain to see that the first season had a very good mix of "good and evil" and that last year and last night did not. When you go to mostly dark, you may get some critical acclaim as in Mad Men or Battlestar Galactica, but one thing you do not get is lots of viewers. Sadly though, the writing just didn't seem particularly good (the writing on Mad Men is typically fantastic, even if it's a "dark" show).

The first half hour of Heroes pulled a 6.8/10, so it seemed like only the show's faithful following showed up to begin with, and then it slowly lost some of them dropping to a 6.1/10 the final half hour. We'll know more when the fast affiliate data arrives.

Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles pulled a 3.9/6, which at least in the metered markets was better than Prison Break's 3.6/5. The CW was down a bit, but only a bit vs first run competition across the board with both Gossip Girl and One Tree Hill pulling a 2.4/4. If CW retained a significant portion of last week's 18-34 female crowd (and judging from these numbers, it will), it will be much happier with these numbers than NBC will be with Heroes...

Bill will post the full overnight report as soon as we get the updated fast affiliate data...

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