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Thursday Final Ratings: 'The Big Bang Theory' and 'Two and a Half Men' Adjusted Up; 'Up All Night', 'Beauty and the Beast' and '30 Rock' Adjusted Down; No Adjustment for 'The Vampire Diaries'

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October 12th, 2012

The Big Bang Theory was adjusted up three tenths, Two and a Half Men was adjusted up a single tenth, and 30 Rock, Up All Night and Beauty And The Beast were each adjusted down a tenth among adults 18-49 versus the preliminary Thursday broadcast ratings.

Note: We do not have final numbers for the VP debate coverage, but do have final numbers for each network's "analysis" segment which aired at 10:30PM

Final broadcast primetime ratings for Thursday, October 11, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM CBS The Big Bang Theory 4.5 13 14.23
FOX The X Factor 2.9 8 8.43
ABC Last Resort 1.6 4 6.89
CW The Vampire Diaries 1.6 5 3.18
NBC 30 Rock 1.3 4 3.4
tvbythenumbers.com
8:30PM CBS Two and a Half Men 3.5 10 11.35
NBC Up All Night 1.1 3 2.88
tvbythenumbers.com
9:00PM CW Beauty And The Beast -P 1.2 3 2.78
tvbythenumbers.com
10:30 PM NBC Decision '12 VP Analysis 2.0 5 6.7
CBS Campaign '12 VP Debate 1.6 4 5.93
ABC Vote 2012 Analysis 1.4 4 6.06

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Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2012 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

 
  • robin

    @thesnowleopard

    Both supernatural and TVD wouldn’t have existed without Buffy

  • Melanie

    @Robin
    SPN owes more to X-Files than to Buffy. But, yes, I think we can credit Buffy as being in on the gorund floor of the vampire craze. But, people forget, Buffy was a cultural phenom – not a big ratings success.

  • thesnowleopard

    @gio85
    It’s funny that you should complain Last Resort isn’t getting an audience because it’s so smart. Watching the pilot, I thought it was a breezy, brain-dead action adventure that was so dumb, it might actually gain an audience that wanted lots of action and effects without thinking too hard about it. Guess I was wrong about its gaining an audience.

    I’ve become wary of claims that a show is dying because it’s too smart or high-quality to live. I’ve reviewed enough shows that went down the tubes to find that while the fanboys were claiming they were the best, most misunderstood shows evah, plenty of bad writing, execrable acting, and indifferent production values said otherwise.

  • Melanie

    @thesnowleopard I don’t think you can claim that TVD wouldn’t have existed without Supernatural. Dawn Ostroff picked up TVD to capitalize on the Twilight craze – she nearly cancelled SPN after S2. I really don’t think the two have much to do with each other.

  • thesnowleopard

    @robin
    I disagree. Buffy was never the be-all and end-all of dark fantasy on TV, even when it was on. It’s just that a generation of young adults who were kids and teens then now think that’s so. Doesn’t make it so.

    For example, if you look at the schedule for Fall 2005, you’ll note that there were two similarly themed horror shows launched. One was Supernatural (which was made in large part by the same production team that had made The X-Files) and one was Night Stalker (which was a remake of the now-famous schlocky 70s horror show, Kolchak: The Night Stalker). Supernatural succeeded and Night Stalker failed, but neither was spawned by Buffy.

    Supernatural is basically an occult horror version of The X-Files, from the point of view of two young criminals deep in the Life instead of two slightly older FBI agents working the peripheries of it. Night Stalker was a remake of a seminal horror show that came out nearly a quarter of a century before Buffy ever saw the light of day (and, if Joss Whedon were honest about his sourcing, he’d admit to how much he ripped off from shows like that). Supernatural’s scruffy style was also obviously a riff on the original Night Stalker. in fact, Kripke’s idea was to have two reporters traveling around America a la the 60s show, Route 66, investigating supernatural doings. I bet they had to change that premise because the Night Stalker remake was already in production and the ideas were too close.

    Now, was the show influenced by Buffy? Sure. One of the writers (Ben Edlund) was a writer-producer on Angel and Firefly. There’s a big influence right there. But its basic premise and worldview are radically different from that of Buffy (High school is Hell? The Brothers Winchester *wish* that were all they had to worry about) and obviously inspired by older shows.

  • Ellie

    @thesnowleopard

    I’m still in early season two, but I agree completely about Damon. He made a fun villain at first, but I’m really getting sick of the whitewashing. He begins the show by raping and abusing the heroine’s second best friend through mind control, attempts to and nearly does kill the heroine’s best friend, kills a sympathetic non-murdering female vampire in order to throw suspicion off of him. Said heroine knows all of this and more, and yet begs for his life after a few minutes of fun bonding time. We in the audience are supposed to be okay with her continuing to socialize with him in spite of his abuse towards her friends because she sees that all of his actions have been driven by “love.”

    I also more or less agree with you on Buffy’s faults (although I do think the show was still strong through season 5), but based on what I’ve seen the highs on BtVS were a lot higher. I’d be very surprised if TVD ever turns out episodes approaching the quality of Passion, Hush, Restless, The Body or Once More With Feeling.

  • thesnowleopard

    @Melanie

    I disagree. Dawn Ostroff certainly showed signs of extreme dislike for Supernatural (She’s never openly admitted to it, but you can read between the lines), but Supernatural was also doing a lot better in the A18-49 rating than most of her other offerings and survived the Writers Strike in surprisingly good shape. She couldn’t just dump it. It had to have been making money, or it wouldn’t still be here, which meant Ostroff had to look into ways of cloning it.

    But of course she was going to clone it in *her* way and The Vampire Diaries was her overnight teen hit after a zillion failures. People tend to forget that the CW had tried fantasy shows previously and either not had much success with them (Anybody remember Valentine? No?) or found them too male-skewing (Yep, Reaper). Dark fantasy shows weren’t exactly scoring on other networks at the time, either (The vampire show Moonlight, for example, tanked in 2007). So, no, capitalizing on the vampire craze was not likely to be the main reason. Vampires, even sexy vampires, have been around for a long time. Doesn’t make them an automatic draw on TV.

    The only obvious model at the time was Supernatural. And networks don’t try stuff unless they have a hit model they want to emulate.

    As for these days, it’s pretty obvious Pedowitz likes Supernatural just from looking at the male characters in Arrow and B&B. Talk about Dean Winchester clones.

    I notice you don’t argue that Buffy would have still been launched and a success without The X-Files. Or, for that matter, Xena.

  • robin

    @Ellie

    I completely agree with you on Damon

  • thesnowleopard

    @Ellie
    Yeah, pretty much. I don’t think you have to watch the show for Damon. I think it’s possible to enjoy it even in spite of disliking Damon. But it was too much for me. Maybe if I’d found Damon as funny and watchable as Spike…but I didn’t.

    I enjoyed Buffy a lot when it first came out, but it’s faded for me, at least the seasons post-three (I still find the season three finale a great moment of TV). Not quite sure why, but I think most of season four jumped an enormous Great White for me and my love for the show never quite recovered. Especially with the way the Glory storyline fizzled (and I hated Dawn).

    Also, as an ex-EMT, I actively loathe “The Body” for its first ten minutes or so. That situation simply never would have happened, especially in an affluent neighborhood like that. I found it offensive and insulting to EMS first responders to show two paramedics just-first of all-declaring a patient dead at the scene (There are major protocols about that since, legally, only a doctor or medical examiner/coroner can declare a person dead) and then leaving her there at the scene with her two teenage daughters. Mix a little freakin’ research in with your bathos, Joss.

  • Ellie

    @thesnowleopard

    Well, so far I’m finding that it’s still possible to enjoy the show in spite of Damon, but I might not feel that way if I hadn’t started to become a lot more invested in Caroline than I ever would have expected. She’s almost like a nicer Harmony Kendall taken seriously and written with empathy. I’m starting to wonder if the writers have any idea how much more likeable she is than supposed “heroine” Elena.

    I’m not the world’s biggest Spike fan by any means, but Marsters is a much better actor than Somerhalder and he had far stronger dialogue to help him out. In the beginning Damon worked well enough for this series as a destructive yet entertaining presence as long as we weren’t being asked to sympathize with him.

    The season four storyline was terrible, no argument there, though for me it was saved by good individual episodes like Something Blue, Hush, the Faith two-parter, and Restless. I actually like Dawn in season five for what she added to Buffy’s character (though it still annoys me that she was added without any thought as to how to keep her relevant afterwards).

    As for The Body, well, that’s always been one of Joss’s major flaws as a writer. As talented as he is, he’ll skip out on both research and thorough plotting, counting on his knack for emotional resonance to bring him through. I’m sure those scenes would bother me a lot more if I’d worked as an EMT, but it’s still an effective portrayal of what the immediate aftermath of the sudden death of a loved one subjectively feels like.

  • Fake Me Out

    @mayorofsmpleton

    Beauty and the Beast was not filming episodes for “next season” — the show premiered last night…

    So clearly reading comprehension was not a prerequisite to be elected mayor of simpletown.

  • Ram510

    Nikita skews older as well. I feel that Atrow and Nikita should’ve been paired together

  • thesnowleopard

    @Ellie

    I think hating Damon and liking the show works better if you come in later where you can see that other characters (like Caroline) will actually stick around and have long-term arcs. The obsessive focus on the love triangle early on was nauseating, especially if you came from the books, where Elena is stronger, a bit more amoral, and much less of a drip. I like Dobrev as Katherine, but TV Elena is pretty boring.

    And yeah, Marsters is definitely a better actor than Somerhalder. Somerhalder’s not terrible, but he has this eye-widening thing he does whenever he wants to seem arch that makes me think of vaudeville, Egyptian pharaohs and mascara. Marsters has…um…more range, shall we say.

    Couldn’t warm to Dawn. I loathe annoying teens. In fact, I think I actually hated them more when I *was* a teen. Every time she was on, I felt embarrassed on behalf of teens everywhere, everywhen. I feel the same way about that brat on “Major Crimes.”

    I’ve been in a similar situation to the paramedics in “The Body” and I didn’t bail like that. So, yeah, I take that a bit personally. That kind of thing is also why I do a lot of research as a writer. There just wasn’t any reason to get that wrong (when the entire episode was supposed to be an accurate study in grief) except sheer laziness. I can’t get everything right as a writer, but if I’m going to screw up like that, I want it to be an honest mistake.

  • Sia

    Yay for Stefan/Elena and TVD.

  • Sia

    I’m surprised Beauty and the Beast had good ratings.

  • Ellie

    @thesnowleopard

    I haven’t read the books, but an explicitly amoral Elena would definitely work better. She’s already manipulative. She has a pretty easy time prioritizing other things above the mound of dead bodies piling up. She vacillates between ignoring the well-being of the family and friends she claims she so cares about and attempting to control them “for their own good.” Her characterization would be so much more coherent if the writers would just toss out the conceit that she’s somehow an especially wonderful human being.

    “he has this eye-widening thing he does whenever he wants to seem arch that makes me think of vaudeville, Egyptian pharaohs and mascara.”

    Ha, yes! I wouldn’t say that he’s bad either, but it’s just so camp when he does that eye thing. Oddly enough, for me I think it helps a little; he can be so ridiculous that I almost hate him a little less than I would otherwise.

  • thesnowleopard

    @Ellie
    She’s a total mean girl in the books. Also a blonde. And the backstory for the brothers is way back in the Renaissance not the Civil War.

    I don’t have a problem with characters having to deal with moral complexities in an imperfect way. But I agree that it gets irritating when a writer then insists on putting those characters on a pedestal. Or turning them into martyrs. Why not just have them be unapologetically dark?

    The eye thing is pretty camp. If I liked the character, I probably wouldn’t care, but as it is, I find it very distracting.

  • Ellie

    @thesnowleopard

    I like those kinds of characters and stories too. Different factions are at odds and won’t be reconciled. Ever. When you’re far from the most powerful player on the map, you don’t always have an ideal choice in alignments. You might not want anyone to die, but when TSHTF you’re probably siding with what has come to constitute your own.

    It’s one of the biggest reasons that my all-time favorite show is Farscape (“No sermons”). There are flashes of that in TVD, but then they go and cop out with a heaping dose of Special Girl syndrome. Don’t pretend that Elena is Bella Swan. She can and should be a good deal more compelling than that.

    With Caroline (I apologize for continuing to bring her up; she’s just my favorite) they’ve thus far done a really good job of walking that tightrope. She genuinely tries to be a good person, but she’s also got to deal with her basic character flaws amplified as well as the compromises necessary to ensure survival, and she really just wants to stay alive another day. Knowing absolutely nothing about any behind the scenes drama in this show, I’m not sure where the issue with Elena originates–executives insisting that the main heroine must be Special or the showrunner going blind to what a wish fulfillment cipher the female lead is in danger of becoming.

  • Ellie

    @thesnowleopard

    “The eye thing is pretty camp. If I liked the character, I probably wouldn’t care, but as it is, I find it very distracting.”

    Poor guy really missed the silent movie era. Coulda been another Valentino, what with all the “smoldering.”

  • Moose

    They can’t cancel Last Resort fast enough. I have watched every episode aired so far. I don’t know which is worse, the horrible scripts, the horrible acting, or the completely unbelievable nonsensical show concept.

    Moron drops a flashlight in the sub, check. That concept where something was dropped in a sub while it is supposed to be running silent has been used in movies all the way back in the black and white film days. Except, in the old days, everyone on the sub kept their mouths shut so that ships couldn’t track them.

    I was waiting for garbage and other items to be shoved in the torpedo tubes to be launched so that the ships would think that they had sunk the sub when all of that garbage floated to the top.

    A female sailor “services” a bad guy in an effort to save the other two kidnapped dudes and herself. She must not have been very good at what she did. The bad guy was ready to bump her off too.

    One of the other two kidnapped sailors turns cowardly and tells the bad guy to kill the other male sailor. We hear three gunshots, but we don’t see him shot on TV. The normal writing swerve to this would be that the sailor is not dead. That he is still being held hostage, probably giving up info about the sub.

    The submarine turns on a dime in order to weave it’s way through obstacles underwater. Riiight.

    Just awful schlock.

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