Masked Scheduler's Ratings Smackdown

Well, "American Idol" is set to return in less than two weeks, and I'm starting to get the calls from the television writers asking for my perspective on whether ABC was smart in bringing it back. They were, and I will explain over the next few days. Also, next week I will share my reminiscences of "Idol," having been at FOX through virtually all of its run, so stay tuned.
NS is looking forward to the return of "Roseanne" and wants to know, "I'm wondering what a solid average audience and demo would be for ABC to bring it back in the fall? I'm also wondering if you have a logical ratings prediction for the premiere. I've seen as low as 1.0/6 million viewers, as high as 3.0/15 million viewers. It seems like a hard one to predict, but ABC certainly isn't shying away from promotion and media attention. My thought is ABC is certainly hoping to keep it around for a multi-year run, since it would make no sense to promote this much for just a 9-episode run. Ad rates (second highest ad rate for an ABC comedy) also suggest they're hoping for solid numbers, although 'Will & Grace' commanded over $200,000 for a 30 second ad and fizzled out quickly."
I think that "Roseanne" is going to do just fine for several reasons. "Will & Grace" was very successful, but "Roseanne" spent some seasons as the No. 1 show on television and in many ways is more in touch with what's going on in the country right now than the more urban "W&G." They have made it clear that the comedy will address contemporary issues. For what it's worth, "Roseanne" will be paired up with the final episodes of "The Middle," which should make for a very compatible hour of television, and "Roseanne" is joining an ABC lineup that has returned to its roots focusing on middle America family comedies.
In addition, if ABC is able to relaunch "American Idol," it will serve as a compatible promotional platform for "Roseanne."
My guess is that the premiere will do somewhere in the 2.4 - 2.6 range in adults 18-49 and settle in at a 1.9 - 2.1 rating. Remember it's coming on at 8 p.m. after daylight savings time.
AR has a Netflix recommendation from Spain:
"I read today on TV By the Numbers that you and the Masked Wife watched 'La Mante,' a French TV series on Netflix. I am from Spain so I would like to recommend the first Spanish Netflix original series called 'Las Chicas del Cable' (Cable Girls).
"This series is about four girls that work at a telephone company. They have to deal with their personal lives and things that happen during the season (a murder). The series is made by the creators of the highest-rated series in Spain called 'Velvet,' which is also on Netflix.
I'm curious of your opinion of it."
Thanx for the recommendation and I will definitely check it out. International series is what I enjoy most about Netflix. In addition to being fluent in French, the Masked Wife also speaks Spanish, so she will enjoy it as well I'm sure. I will keep you posted.
This column is only as good as the questions you send in, so email them to me at and follow along on Twitter @maskedscheduler.

Broadcast primetime live + same-day ratings for Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2018

The numbers for Tuesday:

Time Show Adults 18-49 rating/share
Viewers (millions)
8 p.m. The Voice (NBC) 2.3/9 10.77
NCIS (CBS) 1.2/5 12.32
The Middle (ABC) 1.2/5 5.17
Lethal Weapon (FOX) 1.0/4 4.14
The Flash (The CW) 0.7/3 2.08
8:30 p.m. Fresh Off the Boat (ABC) 0.9/4 3.23
9 p.m. This Is Us (NBC) 2.5/9 9.71
Bull (CBS) 1.1/4 10.61
LA to Vegas (FOX) 0.7/3 2.37
Black-ish (ABC) – R 0.7/3 2.58
Black Lightning (The CW) 0.5/2 1.62
9:30 p.m. The Mick (FOX) 0.6/2 1.91
Modern Family (ABC) – R 0.6/2 2.20
10 p.m. Chicago Med (NBC) 1.4/6 7.27
NCIS: New Orleans (CBS) 0.9/4 8.16
Kevin (Probably) Saves the World (ABC) 0.5/2 2.09


“The Flash” was a bit slow out of the gate Tuesday after a couple of weeks off.

The CW show tied its series low in adults 18-49 with a 0.7 rating, a tenth of a point below its last outing. “Black Lightning” came in at 0.5, even with its last episode.

NBC led the night among adults 18-49 even though all three of its shows were off vs. their last episodes. “The Voice” (2.3) came down half a point from Monday’s premiere (and was down 0.4 from its first Tuesday episode of the fall). “This Is Us” had the night’s best 18-49 rating at 2.5 but slipped 0.2 from its last episode, and “Chicago Med” was down a tenth at 1.4.

CBS’ “NCIS” (1.2, -0.3 and tying its series low) and “Bull” (1.1, -0.1) each fell from their last new episodes, while “NCIS: New Orleans” held steady at 0.9. “Lethal Weapon” (1.0), “LA to Vegas” (0.7) and “The Mick” (0.6) each came down a tenth on FOX. “The Middle” and “Fresh Off the Boat” were both steady for ABC, and “Kevin (Probably) Saves the World” (0.5) ticked up a tenth from last week’s season low.

Network averages:

Adults 18-49 rating/share 2.1/8 1.1/4 0.8/3 0.8/3 0.6/2
Total Viewers (millions) 9.25 10.36 3.14 2.90 1.85


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

11:35 p.m.

“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”: 0.6/4, 2.2/6

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert”: 0.5/3, 2.8/8

“Jimmy Kimmel Live” – R: 0.4/2, 1.4/4

12:35 a.m.

“Late Night with Seth Meyers”: 0.4/3, 1.3/5

“The Late Late Show with James Corden”: 0.3/2, 1.2/5

“Nightline”: 0.3/2, 1.0/4

: 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.

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