Mediaweek's John Consoli has a story on how CBS is both growing in the older demographics and the 18-49 demographics versus last season at this juncture. Even granddaddy 60 Minutes had improved its 18-49 rating versus last year at this point in the season. Although almost every show has increased its median age, the reach with younger viewers is also growing.
"We don't necessarily have just an older tent the other networks," said Kelly Kahl, senior executive vp, CBS prime time, "we have a bigger, broader tent. Our schedule is built for the long haul. There are no black-hole nights. And we won't need a home-run type of program to save us like some of the other networks."
While one could argue that Friday night and Saturday night are being sucked into the accretion disk of a large black hole, CBS fares better than the other four major networks on Fridays and even Saturday nights. This past weekend on these lesser-viewed nights on the broadcast nets, CBS still had the most viewers overall and the most 18-49 viewers as well.
Those who claim to have boycotted CBS for canceling their favorite show(s) aren't having much of an impact (ok, any impact at all).
The Mediaweek story points out that NCIS has averaged nearly 6 million more viewers than House on Tuesdays at 8pm.
"We are a little surprised that NCIS has done so well against House," Kahl said. "Overall it is clearly is a more competitive time period this year. It speaks to the strength of this show and procedurals in general."
CBS has been accused by some TV critics for being too heavy into procedurals, but Kahl defends the genre. "Procedurals have been around since the start of television and are its backbone. Plus, all of our procedurals are different, including the three CSIs."