Masked Scheduler's Ratings Smackdown

Here’s a Masked Mail question from CM:
"Why do some canceled shows with unaired episodes end up burning off (like on Saturdays or the summer) and some don't? For example, 'Living Biblically' was supposed to come back [last week] until CBS changed its mind, 'Ghosted' is back, but 'Me, Myself & I' never returned. Previous examples I can think of are 'The Millers' in 2015 and 'Angel from Hell' in 2016, which both finished in the summer. Does it have something to do with contractual obligations that say they must air all episodes, or is it just scheduling?"
Good question, and I don’t think that there is one answer to it. Although these are failed series, networks may think that they are better off with originals in the summer than repeats, and there is always that slight chance that a show can find an audience and possibly be reconsidered. Every once in a while a series announced in May will be burned off the following summer, and there are examples of these series getting a second life.
Financially, you can obviously recover some of the cost of the license fee by airing all the episodes, and there may be some foreign sales reasons for airing them all, since I believe airing American series outside of the U.S. is dictated by the U.S. network schedule.
Of course, there are always relationship issues, and there’s little downside to running the originals to make talent happy.
With the growth in streaming options, networks will also run off the originals on their streaming sites, so it's rare today that a show does not have an opportunity to run off their episodes.
One other note: FOX hasn't officially made a decision on "Ghosted" yet.
DC has a question about singing competitions.
"'The Voice' shot itself in the foot by the way they scheduled the competition this past season. It certainly seemed that the way the contestants were cut down so quickly didn't give the audience enough time to get invested in most of the contestants. Because it seemed so unfair to the contestants, it raises the question of why someone would want to audition for that show if 'Idol' seems like a better platform for them over the next couple of seasons."
"American Idol" and "The Voice" are different shows in that "The Voice" is more about the judges and the competition among them, whereas "Idol," for most of its run on FOX, was more about the kids and becoming a star. That's why "The Vioce" has never really had a breakout star like Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood.
"Idol" was also more successful in generating big careers for the "losers" as well, a la Jennifer Hudson and Katharine McPhee. I agree that prolonging the competition and not eliminating several contestants in the same week gives the audience something to invest in.
When "Idol" started focusing more on the judges and emphasizing the boy-with-the-guitar competitors, ratings declined and the success of the winners started to fade. It was really in the first few years that "Idol" was generating beloved stars. I always felt that if you're lucky, maybe you have three singers who actually have the potential to be a star. The others are personalities or just filler.
I think contestants go on whichever show they can get on. Exposure is what matters.
Questions can go to and Twitter @maskedscheduler.

Broadcast primetime live + same-day ratings for Thursday, June 14, 2018

The numbers for Thursday:

Time Show Adults 18-49 rating/share
Viewers (millions)
8 p.m. The Big Bang Theory (CBS) – R 0.9/5 6.09
Little Big Shots (NBC) 0.8/4 5.65
Celebrity Family Feud (ABC) – R 0.8/4 4.06
The Four: Battle for Stardom (FOX) (8-10 p.m.) 0.7/3 2.16
Supernatural (The CW) – R 0.2/1 0.78
8:30 p.m. Young Sheldon (CBS) – R 0.9/5 5.84
9 p.m. Mom (CBS) – R 0.7/3 5.04
The $100,000 Pyramid (ABC) – R 0.7/3 3.67
Marlon (NBC) – P 0.7/3 2.96
Black Lightning (The CW) – R 0.2/1 0.61
9:30 p.m. Life in Pieces (CBS) – R 0.7/3 3.94
Marlon (NBC) 0.6/3 2.43
10 p.m. SWAT (CBS) – R 0.6/3 3.66
To Tell the Truth (ABC) – R 0.6/3 2.77
Law & Order: SVU (NBC) – R 0.5/2 2.48


No show on the broadcast networks made it over a 1.0 rating in adults 18-49 Thursday night. Reruns of “The Big Bang Theory” and “Young Sheldon” on CBS (each 0.9) got closest.

“Little Big Shots” was the highest-rated original program on the networks with a 0.8, even with its last episode in late April. Season 2 of “Marlon” premiered to 0.7 and 0.6 for NBC. That’s down considerably from a 1.2 for its series premiere last year, but last year’s debut also had a lead-in of 2.1 from “America’s Got Talent.”

“The Four: Battle for Stardom” lost a tenth of a point from last week’s premiere and came in at 0.7.

Network averages:

Adults 18-49 rating/share 0.7/3 0.7/3 0.7/3 0.6/3 0.2/1
Total Viewers (millions) 4.70 3.50 2.16 3.61 0.69


Late-night metered market ratings (adults 18-49, households):

11:35 p.m.

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert”: 0.5/3, 2.4/7

“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”: 0.5/3, 1.7/5

“Jimmy Kimmel Live”: 0.5/3, 1.5/4

12:35 a.m.

“Late Night with Seth Meyers”: 0.3/3, 1.1/4

“Nightline”: 0.3/2, 1.0/3

“The Late Late Show with James Corden”: 0.2/2, 1.0/4


Rating: Estimated percentage of the universe of TV households (or other specified group) tuned to a program in the average minute. Ratings are expressed as a percent.
Fast Affiliate Ratings: These first national ratings are available at approximately 11 a.m. ET the day after telecast. The figures may include stations that did not air the entire network feed, as well as local news breaks or cutaways for local coverage or other programming. Fast Affiliate ratings are not as useful for live programs and are likely to differ significantly from the final results, because the data reflect normal broadcast feed patterns. 
Share (of Audience): 
The percent of households (or persons) using television who are tuned to a specific program, station or network in a specific area at a specific time. 
Time Shifted Viewing:
 Program ratings for national sources are produced in three streams of data – Live, Live +Same-Day and Live +7 Day. Time-shifted figures account for incremental viewing that takes place with DVRs. Live+SD includes viewing during the same broadcast day as the original telecast, with a cut-off of 3 a.m. local time when meters transmit daily viewing to Nielsen for processing. Live +7 ratings include  viewing that takes place during the 7 days following a telecast.

Source: The Nielsen Company.

Posted by:Rick Porter

Rick Porter has been covering TV since the days when networks sent screeners on VHS, one of which was a teaser for the first season of "American Idol." He's left-handed, makes a very solid grilled cheese and has been editor of TV by the Numbers since October 2015. He lives in Austin.

  • ‘Big Bang Theory’ rerun adjusts up: Thursday final ratings – TV By The Numbers by

    […] original shows all carried their preliminary adults 18-49 ratings through to the finals. The only change was a 0.1 upward adjustment for a “Big Bang […]



      What ?


blog comments powered by Disqus