Bad reviews be damned. Rob Schneider’s new CBS comedy series Rob overperformed in its series premiere last night, drawing a 4.1/11 among adults 18-49 and 13.5 million viewers. The multi-cultural sitcom delivered CBS’ best numbers in the Thursday 8:30 PM slot in almost two years, since the Thursday finale of Survivor: Heroes And Villains on May 13, 2010, and ranked as the third-highest-rated new series premiere this season among 18-49 behind CBS’ 2 Broke Girls and Fox’s New Girl. On the cautionary side, Rob did only slightly better than the debut of the now-defunct $#*! My Dad Says in the time period in fall 2010 (4.0 in 18-49). Rob was helped by a strong lead-in from The Big Bang Theory (5.2/15), which was up 13% from its last original five weeks ago. (Rob was also probably aided by its strong Hispanic themes — George Lopez’ appeal to Latinos helped the ABC sitcom get to syndication). Rob lifted CBS’ rookie drama Person Of Interest (3.2/8, 14.3 million) at 9 PM to series highs in adults 18-49 and total viewers. The Mentalist (2.7/7) was flat. CBS easily won the night in 18-49 and total viewers.
News wasn’t as good for Fox’s new Bones spinoff The Finder, which opened with a 1.7/4 at 9 PM, dropping 29% from its lead-in, a new Bones (2.4/6, even with its last original telecast five weeks ago). The Finder will probably get a lift next week when it will air after American Idol.
In a challenging new time slot, Thursday 8 PM, NBC’s 30 Rock logged its lowest-rated premiere with its Season 6 opener last night, averaging a 1.8/5 among adults 18-49, down 31% from last season’s debut at 8:30 PM. On the plus side, 30 Rock outperformed the time period’s long-time occupant, Community, posting NBC’s highest 18-49 rating in the half-hour since September 29. 30 Rock‘s Tina Fey gave pal Amy Poehler a boost: At 8:30 PM, Poehler’s Parks And Recreation (1.9/5) was up 6% from its last original five weeks ago. The Office (2.9/7) was flat and tied for a season low. Rookie comedy Up All Night (2.0/5) showed only marginal improvement in moving to the Thursday 9:30 PM slot. Its debut in the new time period was up 5% from the show’s last original in the Wednesday 8 PM time period five weeks ago. In its regular time slot debut, NBC’s The Firm (1.0/3) dived 29% from its underwhelming Sunday premiere, falling below the ratings levels of its predecessor in the Thursday 10 PM slot, canceled drama Prime Suspect. Because this was an acquisition, The Firm costs NBC a fraction of what Prime Suspect did. But still, the network probably won’t keep the show on for much longer at these numbers.
ABC’s lineup took a hit against increased competition. Wipeout (2.2/6) was down 19% from last week’s season premiere. Grey’s Anatomy (3.8/9) was down 16%, and Private Practice (2.4/6) was down 11%.