ABC's Thursday Dramas Open Impressively with Across the Board Gains

via press release:

“Last Resort” Opens to ABC’s Top Adult 18-49 Rating in the Slot in Over 8 Months

To Qualify as the Network’s Highest-Rated Thursday Drama Debut in 3 Years


Up Over its Year-Ago Premiere, ABC’s “Grey’s” is Thursday’s Definitive No. 1 Drama Among Adults 18-49, Generating the Series’ 2nd-Biggest Numbers Since March 2011


ABC’s Sophomore Season Premiere of “Scandal” Grows Across All Key Adult Demos

Over its Freshman Debut, Hitting Series Highs in Adults 18-34 and Women 18-34



Thursday Night (8:00-11:00 p.m.)

ABC earned second place on season premiere Thursday among Adults 18-49 (2.9/8), leading Fox by 4% (2.8/8) and NBC by 71% (1.7/5).  The Net won the night among Women 18-49 (3.7/10).


“Last Resort” (8:00-9:00 p.m.)

During the 8 o’clock hour against Fox’s “The X Factor” and CBS’ top-rated comedies (“The Big Bang Theory”/”Two and a Half Men”), the series debut of ABC’s “Last Resort” outdelivered its NBC competition (“SNL Primetime Election”/”Up All Night”) by 4.2 million viewers (9.1 million vs. 4.9 million) and by 22% in Adults 18-49 (2.2/7 vs. 1.8/5).  In addition, the new ABC drama attracted nearly as large an audience as “The X Factor” (9.2 million), pacing within 113k Total Viewers. Despite the competition, “Last Resort” built by 8% in viewers (8.7 million to 9.4 million) and by 15% in Adults 18-49 (2.0/6 to 2.3/7) from its first half-hour to its second half-hour.


  • Up over the year-ago debut of “Charlie’s Angels” in Adults 18-49 (+5%), “Last Resort” stood as ABC’s biggest Thursday drama debut in 3 years with young adults – since 9/24/09.   In addition, the new series scored ABC’s highest Adult 18-49 rating in the hour in more than 8 months – since 1/12/12.


“Grey’s Anatomy” (9:00-10:00 p.m.)

Building on its lead-in at 9:00 p.m. in Adults 18-49 (+95%), ABC’s 9th season premiere of “Grey’s Anatomy” led its competition by wide margins and finished as Thursday’s definitive No. 1 drama. During the 9 o’clock hour, ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy” (4.3/12) outdelivered CBS’ “Person of Interest” by 48% (2.9/8), Fox’s “Glee” by 72% (2.5/7) and NBC’s comedies by 95% (“The Office”/”Parks and Recreation” = 2.2/6).  Additionally, “Grey’s” stood as Thursday’s top-rated series with Adults 18-34 (3.8/12).


  • Rising over its year-ago season opener in viewers (+11% – 11.5 million vs. 10.4 million) and young adults (+5% – 4.3/12 vs. 4.1/10), “Grey’s” tallied its 2nd-highest numbers since March 2011 – since 3/31/11.


“Scandal” (10:00-11:00 p.m.)

During the 10 o’clock hour, ABC’s sophomore season premiere of “Scandal” ranked No. 1 in its hour with Adults 18-34 (1.7/6-tie) and Women 18-34 (2.6/8).


  • ABC’s “Scandal” grew over its freshman season premiere (4/5/12) across all key Adults: AD18-34 (+31% – 1.7/6 vs. 1.3/5), AD18-49 (+10% – 2.2/6 vs. 2.0/6) and AD25-54 (+8% – 2.8/7 vs. 2.6/7).   In fact, the show marked series highs in both Adults 18-34 and Women 18-34, while hitting its 2nd-best-ever Adult 18-49 and Adult 25-54 numbers.

A note about increasing DVR penetration and year-to-year rating comparisons: Year-to-year rating comparisons based on the Live + Same Day data stream are distorted by the level of DVR penetration in the Nielsen sample, which has jumped up to 45% currently, from 42% at the same point in 2011. More viewers are watching shows on their own timetables, which may not be reflected in the overnight next-day numbers. The only truly valid year-to-year comparison would be one based on the Live + 7 Day metric, once those stats are released by Nielsen.


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