Snapshot: New series Week 2: This Is Us (2.6 in 18-49, down 0.2, 8.85 million), Bull (1.9, down 0.3, 13.5 million); Returning series all down from their premieres -0.2 with the exception of CBS’ NCIS: New Orleans (1.5, up +0.1), and CBS’ NCIS (2.1. even) and Fox’s Brooklyn Nine-Nine (1.0, even). NBC’s The Voice (3.2 in 18-49, adjusted up to 3.3 in the finals) and CBS’ NCIS (15.2 million viewers) top night; NBC wins in 18-49, CBS in total viewers.
It’s been a string of great news for NBC dramedy This Is Us over the past week. Following the staggering success of its trailer, watched more than 135 million times, Dan Fogelman’s ensemble series opened with a 2.8 adults 18-49 Live+Same Day rating last Tuesday, the highest mark for a new series so far this fall. This Is Us held onto the No. 1 position when Live+3 data came out, rising to a 4.2 in the demo. It is on track to rubber-stamp its top spot in Live+7 with a 4.5 L5 demo rating.
Yesterday, ahead of its second airing, This Is Us received a full-season order. And this morning, it proved that big opening was not a fluke, backing it up with a strong Week 2 retention. With its lead-in, The Voice (3.2 in 18-49) dipping 0.2, This Is Us drew a 2.6 in the demo at 10 PM, also off by 0.2 from last Tuesday’s premiere for a 93% retention, which could increase as there is a chance for upward adjustment in the finals. This Is Us again outscored the combined 10 PM competition, CBS’ NCIS: New Orleans (1.5) and ABC’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. (0.9). It held onto a larger portion of its younger premiere viewers as its Week 2 L+SD audience dipped 11% to 8.85 million.
With an identical NCIS demo lead-in like last week, 2.1 — even with the fast national for the veteran drama’s season opener last week — Bull (1.9) slipped 0.3 for a solid 90% Week 2 retention. After finishing neck and neck with NCIS in L+SD total viewers last Wednesday (16 million for NCIS vs 15.6 million for Bull), and the rookie actually eclipsing the long-running drama in Live+3 viewership, the gap between the two widened in Week 2 with 15.21 million for NCIS and 13.48 million for Bull in L+SD. Still, the two dramas finished again as the top two most watched programs Tuesday night.
This Is Us and Bull join CBS’ Kevin Can Wait in strong Week 2 showings. The Monday comedy rose 0.1 to a 2.7 in the demo.
NCIS: New Orleans (1.5, 10.7 million) appears to be settling nicely into its new 10 PM berth. After an expected year-to-year drop last Tuesday, the spinoff posted a rare Week 2 uptick, up a tenth from its season premiere L+SD, with a smaller lead-in.
That was not the case with ABC’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., which also shifted from 9 PM to 10 PM this fall. The Marvel drama shed another 0.2 vs. its return last week, holding onto less than half of the Dancing With The Stars audience (7.7 million) to draw 3.1 million viewers. S.H.I.E.L.D. is a heavily DVR-ed/VOD-ed show, with its premiere getting a 82% lift in 18-49 in L3 and +61% in total viewers. That should offset some but not all of the declines in Live+SD viewing.
Of the other returning series on Tuesday, Fox comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine (1.0) maintained its premiere L+SD rating, while Fox’s New Girl (1.0) and Scream Queens (0.8) and ABC’s Dancing With The Stars (1.3) all were down two-tenths. UPDATE: Scream Queens dipped another tenth to the dreaded 0.7 in the finals.
New Girl and Scream Queens‘ L+3 demo gains were between 40%-50%, so neither is expected to go above a 1.5 18-49 rating in L3. The horror comedy, which has had challenges attracting viewership on linear TV since its launch, will have to rely again on non-linear platforms to pad its underwhelming delivery on the network. Scream Queens drew the smallest viewership on the Big 4 last night, 1.75 million. Brooklyn was Fox’s strongest performer in that department with 2.4 million viewers.