There were ballerinas, there were breakdancers and there was Paula Abdul at the judge’s table last night on the Season 12 premiere of So You Think You Can Dance (1.2/4). On a night of auditions in Dallas and Memphis, fellow new judge Jason Derulo set the tone for the Nigel Lythgoe-led show by jumping on stage to groove with some ecstatic contestants to one of his own tunes. However, on a much more competitive night than last year’s debut and without a guest appearance by Justin Bieber, SYTYCD took a stumble of 25% among adults 18-49 from the May 28, 2014 Season 11 premiere.
As SYTCD went down in its season opener, time slot reality rivals The Bachelorette (1.9/6) and American Ninja Warrior (2.0/7) both went up double digits from their May 25 shows. With no NBA Playoffs to face, the NBC show rose 11% from its Memorial Day Season 7 debut while the ABC romance series jumped 19% among the key demo from last week. With the rising Bachelorette was a lead-in, ABC’s new summer Steven Spielberg co-EP’d thriller series The Whispers (1.5/5) had a very nice debut. Based on a Ray Bradbury short story from the early 1950s, The Whispers delivered ABC its best-scripted summer debut since Rookie Blue pulled in a 1.9/6 on June 24, 2010. The new series was also up 25% over the most recent scripted summer debut for the network in the 10 PM slot, which was Mistresses on June 3, 2013. All of which added up to ABC winning the night among adults 18-49 and total viewers with a 1.8/6 rating and 6.22 million watching.
CBS and The CW were all encores last night. While NBC had the top show of the night with ANW, it also saw the extreme competition show hit a series viewership high in preliminary numbers with 6.778 million tuning in. Of course, with the previous ANW record being the 6.777 million who watched on June 4, 2012, that number could change in adjustments later today. NBC’s other offer of the night The Island With Bear Grylls (1.2/4) was even with last week’s debut.