Heads Will Probably Roll After Last Night's TV Ratings Bloodbath

By Dustin Rowles | Trade News | May 7, 2014 | Comments ()


trohy-wife-malin-ackerman-ftr.jpg

What the hell was everyone doing last night while I was watching TV? With the exception of Sunday night, there’s no night where I have to watch more TV than on Tuesdays, although with the exception of Fargo and The Mindy Project, it’s not that great a TV night. Apparently, others feel no such obligation to watch mediocre television, as nine (9) network shows hit series lows.

The only bright spot? The Mindy Project actually performed better than New Girl, and beat its sitcom competition in the timeslot, growing 18 percent over last week.

With the exception of Mindy, however, the rest of the ratings looked downright depressing. New Girl had a dismal 1.2 in the demo, and was seen by only 2.6 million overall viewers (that’s less than many cable shows). Agents of SHIELD, despite it being the penultimate episode (and a pretty good one, at that) also hit a series low with a 1.5 in the demo and only 5 million viewers, down from the 12 million that watched the season premiere.

The show that got hit the worst, however, was Trophy Wife, which fell to a .7 in the demo, although it did manage more overall viewers than New Girl. Still, a .7 is FXX numbers, and that’s not going to work on ABC. Keep in mind, that a Big Bang Theory rerun on TBS gets a 1.1, at least, and that an average episode of The Daily Show at 11 p.m. on Comedy Central gets a .7.

New Girl and Mindy have already been renewed, but the fates of Trophy Wife and SHIELD are still up in the air. Last night’s ratings were probably the nail in the coffin for Trophy Wife, and while I’m sure SHIELD will ultimately get a renewal, if the slide keeps continuing like this, Marvel might want to rethink using SHIELD to continue the overall Marvel universe storylines.

About a Boy, with a 1.5 and 6 million overall viewers, looks better than the other sitcom competition, but even it is continuing to fall, while Growing Up Fisher fell below The Mindy Project in the demo.

Person of Interest, The Voice and Glee also hit season lows. In fact. Glee’s .8 was the same in the demo was the CW’s Originals, which also hit a series low.

So, either network executives are going to take a hatchet through parts of their schedule based on last night’s ratings, or this is simply the new normal.

Source: EW



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Comments Are Welcome, Jerks Will Be Banned


  • Malin Ackerman is the human equivalent of "fetch."

  • Coolg82

    I don't think there is any worry about Agents of Shield, because even if it does poorly, Disney has the cash to keep it going indefinitely if they actually intend to keep it an important part of the MCU. Hell, even the profits from Cap 2 alone can keep it going, I don't think there is any cause for concern for the future of the show. Whether it will continue the pattern of being boring until one of the movies does something interesting or not we will just have to see.

  • e jerry powell

    Hey, didn't Whitford do an SVU this week?

  • I completely forgot to watch New Girl. I feel no compulsion to go and watch it now. Maybe lots of people felt the same.

  • JustinC83

    Where are you getting that Agents of got a 1.5? All the reputable ratings sites have it at 1 .8 in premliniaries. 1.9/1.8 half hours.

    Furthermore it's ABC's 3rd highest rated drama for the '13-'14 TV season. Why would a netowrk dump their #3 drama?

    Then there is the fact that ÀBC has already probably made their decision with their upfront being next Tuesday which happens hours before the AoS season finale.

  • Why would a network dump their #3 drama?

    Because all to often, networks are programmed by chimps -- no offense to my simian cousins.

  • Jericho Smith

    That raises a good question-what does TV look like on The Planet of the Apes?

    I assume at least one reality type show where the apes sit around picking lice out of each other's fur...
    NASCAR where 3-4 apes ride up top with various weaponry and beat on the other teams as the cars race around a (hopefully figure-eight) track...
    A soap sudsy (flea bathy?) medical drama featuring interspecial relationships (the orangutans will complain that you never see a scene where two orangutans talk about anything other than a gorilla)...

  • Ben

    Planet of the apes didn't have TV. The Orangutangs were pretty anti technology in general and they all kind of lived in this feudal cult kinda thing.

    (I may have binge watched all the planets of the apes movies recently)

  • e jerry powell

    And then on Skin-e-max, there's a bunch of female Japanese Macaques in hot tubs, feeding their young.

  • I love "Real House-lice of the Rift Valley"

  • e jerry powell

    Frankly, even as I was watching it, I was secretly glad that The Voice sucks so bad. I guess I have to wait until Thursday's overnights are in to see how AI does; with any luck, this cycle of televised karaoke is near its expiration date.

  • Jiffylush

    About a Boy is a great show, I hope it stays good and runs for a while.

  • Devin McMusters

    I know I'm one of the few watching Growing Up Fisher...but it is soooo good. Please someone give it another season.

  • RilesSD

    NBA and NHL both have very exciting playoffs happening.

  • cruzzercruz

    Agents of SHIELD deserves a chance to show us what it's capable of without be forced to work around a major MCU release. If it can stay at least as good as it is right now, I'll tune in every Tuesday. But there's room to grow.

  • axis2clusterB

    I was too depressed after watching the Blackhawks get slaughtered by Minnie to care.

  • Guest

    There is no way Chicago doesn't win that series so don't take it to hard.

  • Aaron Schulz

    If it helps you guys are still gonna crush us in the long run. I will say though it was fun seeing guys in Kane jerseys trying to hold in the tears.

  • BBB40

    I would be happy if all shows everywhere had zero live viewers. Networks need to realize that timeslots as a concept are over. Shows don't compete with other shows, they compete for room on the DVR. They compete with Hulu's evil "5 most recent episodes" policy. Say goodbye to the Friday night dumping ground and good shows being killed too soon because they were forced to compete with the seventeenth hour of the third consecutive night of American Idol. Make a good show, and put it somewhere to stream. Done.

  • Pajiba_Pragmatist

    This all boils down to economics. Maybe it's worth doing here at Pajiba, but we need to have a discussion about online advertising.

    There are essentially three parts to the online advertising equation:

    1. Relevant eyeballs, and personal information about those eyeballs to ensure relevancy
    2. Effective space to show those adverts, and way to measure effectiveness of placement (clicks, impressions, etc.)
    3. Ads to show to the relevant eyeballs in an effective space.

    It's this third category where most online products have a problem. To get a handle on it, you need to have an understanding of "fill rate", "relevance" and "inventory".

    Fill rate is the ability of the ad network to put an ad in an open space. For the most part, the technical hurdles on fill can be met, but the problems come about from making sure that the open space on your page or streaming show is filled with a paid ad that is relevant.

    Relevance is usually determined by comparing the demographic sought to the data on the audience seeing the ad. This is why all your "free" online products datamine the hell out of you. For impression based ads, the $$$ you make are directly related to your ability to show relevance. This is also why free web-products re-sell your data to ad networks that combine data from multiple streams.

    But there's a catch. Getting customers (remember, customers are NOT users, customers are people/companies who want to advertise) is tough. Advertising campaigns always have a budget cap. Meaning an advertiser will agree to pay $10,000 for a campaign, and you will agree to show it to 100,000 relevant users in one month. If you have extra space and end up showing it to 200,000 users, you still only get $10,000.

    This inventory problem is why Yahoo may have more eyeballs than Google, but it doesn't matter because Google's ad engine has the best inventory and monopoly power to set prices (yes, it's theoretically an auction, but Google sets opening prices, and has acknowledged that they bid to show "house" ads, effectively shilling).

    And Inventory is reason that we all saw 1 million CapitalOne ads early in the Hulu days.

    Now you might say "well, that should change soon because Hulu and NetFlix should have all this deep rich data showing how much more effective ads in Hulu are than on regular broadcast".

    Unfortunately, that hasn't happened. What's worse, all the data tends to show that TV impressions are more impactful, albeit on a smaller and smaller audience.

    So right now, if you put an ad supported show on the web, you have a hard time getting your inventory filled, and getting a big enough ad budget to help you grow your audience.

    This is why you aren't seeing Hulu take off.

  • BBB40

    It's especially frustrating because the demographic they crave is the exact group of people they aren't measuring correctly.

  • PDamian

    Too true. The only network TV I've watched in the past couple of years was streamed on Netflix. Same goes for basic cable; I no longer watch anything, including my old favorites like The Walking Dead, because I'm willing to wait for it to show up on VOD, Amazon or Netflix so I can spend a lazy weekend binge-watching. And my elderly mother TiVO's just about everything ("I can watch The Voice with my morning coffee!"). When even 82-year-old grannies won't watch your show when it first airs, it's time to reconsider your delivery model.

  • ceebee_eebee

    Couldn't agree more. It's been YEARS since I watched anything when it aired.

  • e jerry powell

    For that matter, why watch at all when so many sites have much more entertaining recaps?

  • foolsage

    I don't even have a TV. My computer more than suffices.

  • e jerry powell

    In more ways than one, I'm sure...
    ;-)

    (Hey, you set that one up, I just knocked it down.)

  • foolsage

    In every way that matters! :D

    For a computer, that is.

  • foolsage

    I strongly agree. The basic model for TV programming is half a century old now and really needs updating. Today's viewers use DVRs and HULU and other methods that unshackle us from timeslots (and most commercials, for that matter). I'm sure there are still people out there who read their TV guide every day to see what episodes are on tonight, but that breed is aging out of the population fairly quickly.

  • e jerry powell

    No tea, no shade, but that's a statement I'd expect from someone firmly entrenched above the digital divide, which is still a thing. (And I realize that I've already made a similarly elitist remark below, so it's not like I'm singling you out on that.)

  • foolsage

    How many people posting here are NOT above the digital divide, yourself included? I'd wager it's a very low number.

    Sure, we have a way to go before everyone has broadband and a computer in their home. I'd like to see us moving in that direction though; I'm not celebrating my privilege but rather trying to envision a better tomorrow.

  • e jerry powell

    (...or even a tablet or smartphone with wireless.)

  • Aging out yet still watching CBS in droves.

  • foolsage

    Fair point.

  • Sean

    Seriously, what is worth watching on network TV? I watch SHIELD (because I am a comic book geek), and Bob's Burgers, American Dad, and the Simpsons(out of habit). That is it. I haven't turned on NBC except for SNL and football in decades. CBS for college basketball in longer. Fox will occasionally put on something interesting, then cancel it right away. With 500 channel cable, Netflix, and the internet, what is the point? There is something else available to everyones personal tastes, I see no point in network TV anymore.

  • e jerry powell

    Wednesday is the night I really have to struggle with until Key & Peele comes back. Not a damn thing I can even remotely consider that isn't a repeat on a cable channel.

    NBA, then after the playoffs, naps on Wednesdays.

  • cruzzercruz

    Parks and Rec, Community, Hannibal. Literally all I've got and the only thing I watch from network TV besides Fallon/Meyers/SNL.

  • LL

    Bad ratings extended all the way down to late night, too. Kimmel's wrapped in his 2-year contract of security.

  • e jerry powell

    Butbutbut!

    FLYING NUN CUSSING!

  • justin386

    Goddamn, I cannot get on board with thinking the The Mindy Project is a great show. I'm still watching it and I really wanna like it given the cast, but the writing is beyond abysmal at this point with the last few episodes being particularly bad.

    The entire Danny/Mindy thing is a shining example of what not to do when trying to write characters that think and act like actual humans.

    Not to mention the fact that the show likes to turn every one of Mindy's love interests into unlikable monsters when it's time to write them off the show (see: Casey).

    If it did not see another season I would only be mildly sad but I would also totally understand.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    It has been really, really not good since January. My friend raved about it, so I started DVRing - it has its moments, and some funny lines, but very few laugh out loud moments, and very little sincerity to tide me through the times I'm not laughing. It is not a surreal enough show to make up for its glibness.

  • Guest

    If Trophy Wife's renewal means Akerman can't be part of the new Childrens Hospital series than cancel away.

    I don't watch any of these shows regularly (except New Girl which lost me with the Nick and Jess break up) so meh to another year for all.

    *Is Sarah Shahi still a regular in P.O.I.?

  • emilya

    i disagree. children's hospital (which i don't watch) is GREAT about being flexible with the actors schedules, which comes up on every single podcast with anyone from that show. it was also written with the idea that not all of the cast members would be there all the time. i am still loving trophy wife. i keep trying to prepare myself for a life without bert, dianne, and warren, but i just don't accept it. in bert we trust!

  • Guest

    1. Everyone should watch Childrens Hosptial.

    2. As long as she can still do CH, go crazy Trophy Wife.

  • kinoumenthe

    *She is.

  • Slim

    Dustin... the weather was nice.

  • habshockeygrl

    watching hockey!

  • Sean

    I was watching baseball and basketball. But that is an issue. With the NHL and NBA playoffs, and baseball, that has to be a large part of the serious slump in ratings.

  • habshockeygrl

    My husband was watching baseball in the other room. I still have things DVR'd from last week I just keep forgetting about.

  • JenVegas

    I've been trying to get my DVR to record SHIELD and Trophy Wife AND Mindy all season but it actively rejects them every week and they don't record. Perhaps it's a sign.

  • Siege

    I thinks all the sportsing going on probably had some effect -- I was too busy watching the damn Canadiens skate circles around my beloved Bruins to tune in to see Nazi Adam and the Filler Hour on the Voice.

  • e jerry powell

    Not Nazi Adam, Lesbian Adam. I'd like to think that the SS had better haircuts under their hats.

  • Guest

    Totes. I tuned out after watching H.N.I.C. and The National.

    Go Habs Go!

  • lowercase_ryan

    If Bert gets cancelled we* riot!!

    *I

  • pajiba

    I got your back. IN BERT WE TRUST.

  • Ian Fay

    The irony about SHIELD is that it really seems to have been shackled by waiting on the big reveal for Cap 2.

    Since they pulled that cord, the show's been pretty good. Had they done it on their own, it almost certainly wouldn't have taken as long (16 weeks, I think) to finds it way.

  • foolsage

    Very much agreed. It seems that the timing of Captain America 2 forced the show to slow down midseason, so we could wait for the big HYDRA reveal. Unfortunately, that really hurt the show's momentum and ratings. Here's hoping they get a renewal anyhow.

  • Ian Fay

    Given the corporate buyin, I'd say they're pretty likely, especially given the uptick in critical and fan approval in since then.

    I wouldn't be shocked if they took a hit to their budget, though.

  • Too busy watching the bloodbath on the NBA courts last night. Plus, besides Fargo, I don't really care for any of the shows you mentioned.

  • e jerry powell

    I was still in Texas, so even though I was disappointed that My Boyfriend Dirk was out of the playoffs (again), I was still happy to see the smackdown that the Spurs put all over the Blazers. That'll teach LaMarcus Aldridge to come back to Texas before he's ready to finish his damn degree.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    I couldn't watch the NHL bloodbath I was grateful to miss.

    My other thought is that after a long, long winter, people might be outside, enjoying the beautiful weather after dinner.

    -

    Nah.

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