While CBS continues to do the best vs. last season among the major English language broadcasters, with the return of 24, which was entirely absent last season, Fox made a noticeable improvement vs. last year's averages in the most recent week. It's now down only 8.5% in the important adults 18-49 demo. I'd expect to see more improvement from the 24 return going forward. ABC and NBC also showed improvements as well vs. last season, I'd expect those to continue. By this time last year, the strike was beginning to hit the broadcast networks hard and all manner of dreck was being put on the air.
Interestingly, the CW fell to its worst levels vs. last season with the most recent report.
My guess is that CBS, CW and ABC will see additional improvement vs. last season in early 2009 when prior year comparisons to the strike damaged portion of the 2007-8 season get a lot easier. NBC may be another matter, their results last season actually improved on a relative basis during the strike, but they have the Super Bowl this year, which will also lead to a huge spike in their averages making comparisons tricky.
Univision is up across the board vs. last season as is MyNetworkTV (MNT). They're up drastically over last season, thanks mainly to the addition of Friday Night Smackdown!. Note just their numbers, because their bars are truncated. The scale for the other networks would be useless if I adjusted the scale for them.
We didn't received adults 18-34 or adults 25-54 average data this week. I hope we see it next week.
Our chart shows broadcast network prime-time season to date average prime-time viewership for the 2008-9 season compared to the 2007-8 season. Click the image for a full sized chart.
Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2008 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.