Masked Scheduler's Ratings Smackdown

A little Masked Mail until we take a break until the new year. First up is a tweet from MG, who wonders:
"Why would Rupert [Murdoch] want to totally leave the media business other than Fox News and print journalism? Isn't staying in broadcast/video more profitable?"
I think it's all about scale. The feeling had to be that since 21st Century Fox could not compete in the new era of direct-to-consumer distribution, it was a good time to unload the content and some platforms (FX, the regional sports channels) on to some entity which was going to play the big game.
For Rupert, it's about consolidating his interests. I still believe that there are more shoes to drop regarding the network and FOX Sports.
I believe Rupert saw the future of the business and no longer believed 21CF was a buyer in this environment.
This one is from JSP, who is responding to how we treated "Back to You" after the long writers' strike was settled in 2008.
"I've always wondered and didn't know if you have any insight whether if you think 'How I Met Your Mother,' while not a huge success, would've been as successful had CBS not brought it back as well as all their other shows immediately after the writers strike.
"Also, what was your reaction to the CBS strategy while your network and the others opted not to bring back fresh episodes until late into the season? Did you think it was a risky or bold of CBS to do it?"
I will have to take your word that CBS was the first network back after the strike. If they were, it was possibly because they started stockpiling some episodes prior to the strike and stopped airing originals as soon as the strike was called. Also, "HIMYM" was more successful than you make it out to be, and its success was independent of when it returned post-strike. (The strike year was its third season.)
Every network had its own set of issues. For FOX, we were better positioned since "American Idol" and other reality shows helped us get through the strike. This allowed us to give our shows the time to get back on their feet, and in the case of "24," to keep it off the air for a full year. That's a whole other story.
That's it until the new year. Have a safe and happy one. You can email me at and tweet me @maskedscheduler.
One Love to you all.

Broadcast primetime live + same-day ratings for Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017

Note: FOX’s live college football coverage may result in greater adjustments than usual for the network in the final ratings.

The numbers for Wednesday:

Time Show Adults 18-49 rating/share
Viewers (millions)
8 p.m. The Wall (NBC) 1.0/4 5.49
The Goldbergs (ABC) – R 0.8/3 3.53
Foster Farms Bowl (FOX) (8-11 p.m.) 0.7/3 2.78
The Carol Burnett 50th Anniversary Special (CBS) (8-10 p.m.) – R 0.5/2 5.27
EA Madden NFL 18 Challenge (The CW) – S 0.2/1 0.67
8:30 p.m. Speechless (ABC) – R 0.6/2 2.69
9 p.m. Movie: Dolly Parton’s Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love (NBC) (9-11 p.m.) 0.7/3 4.33
Modern Family (ABC) – R 0.7/3 2.94
Penn & Teller: Fool Us (The CW) – R 0.3/1 0.97
9:30 p.m. American Housewife (ABC) – R 0.6/2 2.66
10 p.m. Match Game (ABC) – R 0.5/2 2.64
SEAL Team (CBS) – R 0.4/2 3.46


Wednesday was a rerun-heavy night on the broadcast networks, and thus a pretty quiet one in teh ratings.

One of the few original shows, an episode of “The Wall” on NBC, led the night in both adults 18-49 (1.0 rating) and total viewers (5.49 million).

FOX’s coverage of the Foster Farms Bowl (Purdue vs. Arizona) drew a 0.7 and 2.78 million viewers, pending updates. The only other new show on the night was on The CW: The “EA Madden NFL 18 Challenge” managed only a 0.2 in adults 18-49.

Network averages:

Adults 18-49 rating/share 0.8/3 0.7/3 0.6/3 0.5/2 0.3/1
Total Viewers (millions) 4.78 2.78 2.85 4.67 0.82


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

11:35 p.m.

“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” – R: 0.5/3, 1.7/4

“Jimmy Kimmel Live” – R: 0.4/2, 1.4/4

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” – R: 0.3/1, 1.9/5

12:35 a.m.

“Late Night with Seth Meyers” – R: 0.3/2, 1.0/3

“Nightline”: 0.3/2, 0.9/3

“The Late Late Show with James Corden” – R: 0.2/1, 0.9/3


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.

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