UPDATED with final ratings 2:20 PM: NBC’s new comedy series Champions had a quiet debut last night with a 0.7 adults 18-49 rating and 2.7 million viewers (Live+same day) at 9:30 PM. Because of college basketball pre-emptions on NBC, CBS and the CW, there have been downward adjustments for their shows, with all NBC series, including Champions, and some CBS programs, slipping a tenth of a 18-49 rating point in the finals (from 0.8 in the fast nationals.
With a 0.7 premiere 18-49 L+SD rating, Champions is just off from the preview in the time slot for fellow midseason NBC comedy A.P. Bio (0.8) and in line with the season average of Great News in the half-hour (0.7).
While this is a soft premiere delivery for a new series, Champions did not benefit from the promotional push A.P. Bio got, which, in addition to the January preview in the Thursday 9:30 PM slot, also included a showcase following the Olympics Closing Ceremony. With all that, A.P. Bio‘s performance last night (0.7, 2.3 million after downward adjustment) at 8:30 PM was in line with that of Champions.
NBC’s strongest Thursday comedies remain the 8 PM and 9 PM tentpoles Superstore (1.0, 3.4 million after a downward adjustment) and Will & Grace (1.0, 3.9 million after a downward adjustment). The former was up a tenth from last week, while the latter was down a tenth to a new revival demo low. Chicago Fire (1.2, 6.2 million after a downward adjustment), completing a crossover with Chicago P.D., was up 0.1 from last week to tie its best L+SD demo delivery since the season premiere.
ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy (1.7, 7.1 million) was off -0.3 to log a season demo L+SD low and tie a series low on the day news broke of two longtime series regulars, Jessica Capshaw and Sarah Drew, leaving the show. The remaining two Shondaland series, Scandal (1.1, 4.8 million) and HTGAWM (0.9, 3.5 million) dipped one- and two-tenths, respectively, from last week’s crossover event.
Elsewhere, Fox’s Gotham (0.7, 2.45 million) was off a tenth to a series low, while Showtime at the Apollo (0.6, 2.4 million) was steady.
CBS led the night in 18-49 and total viewers with The Big Bang Theory (2.6, 13.9 million) and Life in Pieces (1.2, 7 million) were up a tenth, while Young Sheldon (2.1, 12.5 million after a downward adjustment) Mom (1.5, 9.3 million) and S.W.A.T. (0.9, 5.6 million after a downward adjustment) were even.
The CW’s Supernatural (0.5, 1.74 million) and Arrow (0.6, 1.35 million) are both steady steady in the demo.