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New TV Series Performance and Prognosis

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October 26th, 2008

More New Series Performance and Prognosis from MAGNA in a report published 10/26/08.

Here are some highlights, which in a few cases are different that the current indications in our Renew / Cancel Index:

CBS’s The Mentalist and FOX’s Fringe, started out as the two stand-out new shows, and that is still the case. The CBS drama because it has had only minimal audience fall-off from its strong opening performance. The FOX drama, not just because of its solid rating performance, but also because of its reduced commercial load, which is helping it retain more of its commercial minute audience than the typical FOX series.

Now, we might have to add CBS’s Thursday 10pm drama, Eleventh Hour, to the list. It debuted a competitive third against NBC’s E.R. and ABC’s new Life on Mars. But it maintained its premiere audience in week 2 (while the ABC drama declined), and actually edged out NBC for the lead among adults 25-54. It also gained among older viewers from its premiere.

ABC’s Life on Mars declined sharply from its solid debut ratings. The next telecast should tell us whether it will rebound, stabilize, or free-fall. The new reality show, Opportunity Knocks is a disappointment for ABC, and has already been pre-empted – not a good sign for the show’s longevity.

CBS’s new Monday comedy, Worst Week, has been competitive in a relatively weak time slot, while the new Wednesday comedy, Gary Unmarried, has held onto its Old Christine lead-in audience, and is ahead of ABC and NBC. Both must be considered modest time-period successes. The new drama, The Ex-List, can go either way.

NBC has had no success with its new series (which may be an indication that the pilot process, while expensive, is nonetheless important—CBS and FOX, with the most successful new shows, did produce pilots). NBC’s new comedy, Kath & Kim, and its new dramas, My Own Worst Enemy, Knight Rider, and Crusoe, have all been disappointments for the network.

Second-season series being re-launched this fall, ABC’s Pushing Daisies, Private Practice, and Dirty Sexy Money, along with NBC’s Lipstick Jungle and Life, and FOX’s Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, are not performing up to their respective network’s expectations. Private Practice and Terminator have the best chance of lasting through the season.

Download the entire report for lots of data on the individual shows including date by date ratings for a wide variety of age demos.

 
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