Facing formidable preseason Monday Night Football on ESPN and a rising Hotel Hell on Fox last night, FX’s Partners fell to its lowest result yet last night. Make that limbo lows for the struggling Kelsey Grammer and Martin Lawrence sitcom. In its third week, the 10/90 series from Lionsgate TV and Debmar-Mercury drew just 380,000 total viewers for its 9 PM broadcast and 450,000 for its 9:30 PM airing. That’s a drop of 55% among total viewers from last week’s 9 PM show and 36% from the 9:30 PM. Among adults 18-49 Partners had 125,000 for its first show last night and 178,000 for its second. That’s a stone cold 72% drop from its 9PM August 11 airing and a 46% fall from last week’s 9:30 PM show.
With two back-to-back episodes a week since its August 4 debut, that 9 PM show was the fifth episode for Partners and hence halfway through the initial 10 episodes that have to meet a ratings threshold in order for FX to pick the show up for a further 90 under the model employed successfully by Lionsgate and Debmar-Mercury’s Anger Management back in June 2012.
However, Partners is no Anger Management — and like that other Lionsgate/Debmar-Mercury 10/90 comedy for FX, the now-cancelled Saint George, things don’t look so good for the Grammer and Lawrence show. At this point in the George Lopez sitcom’s run earlier this year, the 5th episode of Saint George was got 660,000 viewers – a 45% drop from the 1.21 million who watched its March 6 premiere. While nothing has been decided officially at FX yet, sources say, no one can deny that the odd couple lawyers series is reading from the same hymn book.
In Live+Same Day ratings, 1.2 million total viewers with 449,000 among adults 18-49 watched Partners‘ premiere episode earlier this month. The immediately following 9:30 PM show was viewed by 1.0 million with 381,000 among the key demo. Week 2 saw the 9 PM show fall to 862,000 total viewers with 454,000 among the 18-49s. The 9:30 show, Partners’ fourth episode, got 700,000 total viewers and 332,000 in the key demo.
After recently insisting it won’t be revealing Live+Same Day ratings for any of its series, FX’s Live+3 ratings for Partners do expose a bit of a DVR lift for the show. The August 4 premiere episode went up 39% to 1.67 million total viewers in Live+3 with 695,000 among the 18-49s – a 54% rise. Episode 2 went up to 1.52 million with 597,000 among adults 18-49. Episode 3 saw a 29% total viewership rise in Live+3 with a 20% lift in the demo. Episode 3 at 9:30 August 11 had a 38% total viewership jump in Live+3 and a 34% rise among adults 18-49. So the question is, as we await this week’s Live+3 ratings, will those DVR results be enough to keep the partnership between FX and the series going? Check the fine print.