In scheduling their new series in May, network executives always face the dilemma whether bumping off an existing show for a newcomer is worth it. Networks’ goal always is to improve their schedules, but inevitably, their bets not always pay off. Here is a nifty graphic showing how this fall’s freshman series are doing vs. their predecessors in the time slots last year among adults 18-49, with the vast majority of the shows faring worse. Only seven newbies have improved their time periods so far — 3 at Fox, 2 at ABC and one each at NBC and the CW. There are caveats, including ratings bombs last fall goosing up comparisons, including strong new Fox drama Sleepy Hollow which succeeded one of the biggest flops of last fall, Mob Doctor, in the Monday 9 PM slot. Of the seven freshmen in positive territory, five replaced cancelled series, Sleepy Hollow (Mob Doctor), Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. (Dancing With The Stars results), The Originals (90210), Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Ben & Kate), The Goldbergs (Happy Endings); one, Dracula, replaced a newsmagazine; and one, MasterChef Jr., took over for a show that is not on the air and has not been renewed but has originals in the can (Kitchen Nightmares). In the opposite direction, the worst year-to-year drops, 55% for Lucky 7 and 52% for Sean Saves The World, came when newbies replaced long-running shows, the departed Private Practice and The Office, respectively. But it’s most painful for the networks when they’d cancelled a freshman show for poor performance only to replace it with a new series that is doing even worse, like Betrayal, down 46% from 666 Park Ave on Sunday, Once Upon A Time In Wonderland, down 31% from Last Resort on Thursday, and We Are Men, down 12% from Partners on Monday. Also, The Crazy Ones is down 17% in the Thursday 9 PM half-hour, and with its companion Two And A Half Men‘s average even lower, CBS’ 9 PM hour has declined 11% in switching from a drama, Person Of Interest, to comedies this fall. Here are the stats through end of last week.
Fall 2013 Freshman Series Scorecard: Time Slot Gainers and Slackers
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