Snapshot: New series premieres: CBS’ Superior Donuts (1.9 in 18-49, 10.6 million) and Training Day (0.9, 4.7 million), NBC’s Powerless (1.1, 3.1 million); Week 2: the CW’s Riverdale (0.4, -0.1); NBC’s The Blacklist (0.9) hits series L+SD low.
Thursday night is seeing the most midseason action on the broadcast networks with four new series debuting during the past two weeks — three alone last night. None popped, staying in line with the freshman shows they replaced and begging the question: Do the networks have to spend a ton more marketing money to get more of the same ratings with new shows?
The strongest of the three newcomers last night was CBS sitcom Superior Donuts (1.9, 10.6 million), which followed The Big Bang Theory (3.1, 14.6 million). The new comedy starring Jermaine Fowler and Judd Hirsch was even in the demo with the premiere in the same slot of The Great Indoors in the fall, which had a stronger BBT demo lead-in (3.4, 14.3 million).
Superior Donuts, the first CBS sitcom with a black lead in a long time, fared well in total viewers, up from The Great Indoors debut (8.8 million), and is the second most-watched premiere among the three CBS comedies to debut after BBT this season (as well as among any broadcast comedy premieres) behind Kevin Can Wait (11.1 million). (Superior Donuts is expectedly older-skewing as the average age of its two leads is 55.) BBT currently iss tied its lowest Live+Same Day 18-49 ratings and did not get adjusted up in the finals.
Following Mom (1.6, -0.1 from last week) and Life In Pieces (1.3, -0.2), the premiere of CBS’ new drama Training Day barely registered with a 0.9 in adults 18-49. This is the lowest CBS Live+SD in-season drama series debut, below the two previous occupants of the Thursday 10 PM slot: Pure Genius last fall (1.0), and another movie reboot, Rush Hour (1.1), last spring. Once a formidable hour for CBS with Without A Trace and the early going of Elementary, the time period has become a major challenge for the network.
CBS is not alone. NBC drama Blacklist also logged a 0.9 at 10 PM last night, down a tenth from last week to a Live+SD low. NBC opened the night with Superstore (1.2) returning on par with its most recent original. New DC comedy Powerless (1.1) matched the three most recent outings of The Good Place in the time slot. It was down from Good Place‘s time-slot premiere (1.4), but it had a stronger Superstore lead-in (1.5). At 9 PM, Chicago Med (1.2) was on par.
ABC’s TGIT lineup slipped after a strong debut last week. Grey’s Anatomy (2.3) was down 0.3, Scandal (1.8, adjusted down to 1.7 in the final) and How To Get Away With Murder (1.3) each was off by 0.2. Still, ABC won the night in 18-49, while CBS (8.3 million) was No. 1 in total viewers.
The CW’s new comic book-inspired drama Riverdale (0.4) slipped a tenth from its debut last week. Veteran Supernatural (0.6) was even.
At Fox, the Hell’s Kitchen season finale (1.1) was off, while My Kitchen Rules (0.7) held steady.