Week 28: ABC 2nd-most-watched network, 'DWTS' hot again


Gaining for the 3rd Straight Week in Viewers and Young Adults, ABC Generates its Strongest Non-“Oscar” Week in Nearly 5 Months.

ABC Claims 7 of the Top 20 TV Shows for the Week in Adults 18-49, Placing 3 of the Top 6 and Airing the No. 1 Scripted Series for the 2nd Week Running.

ABC Wins Monday for the 3rd Week in a Row in Viewers and Young Adults, Producing the Biggest Overall Audience on the Night for Any Net in 1 Year. 

“DWTS” Builds on its Week-Ago Premiere in Viewers, Key Men, Women and Kids.

ABC’s “Body of Proof” Debuts a Dominant No. 1 on Tuesday at 10pm, Delivering The Net’s Biggest Audience in the Slot with a Regular Hour-Long Show in 6 Years.

Overall: During the week of 3/28/11, ABC finished as the 2nd-most-watched network to CBS, outdrawing Fox by 1.1 million viewers and NBC by 4.0 million viewers.  The Net ranked #1 for the week in Women 18-49.  

ABC aired 7 of the Top 20 TV shows among Adults 18-49, placing 3 in the Top 6 and claiming the #1 scripted series for the 2nd straight week:  Dancing with the Stars – #4, Grey’s Anatomy – #5 (#1 scripted), DWTS Results – #6, Castle – #14, Body of Proof – # 15, Desperate Housewives – #18 and DWTS: The Story So Far – #20. 

The Net delivered 4 of the Top 10 most-watched television programs overall, including 2 of the Top 4, and #2 Dancing, which outdrew Fox’s American Idol – Thursday for the 2nd week running:  DWTS – #2, DWTS Results – #4, Body of Proof – #9 and Grey’s Anatomy – #10.  In addition to being the week’s #1 scripted series in Adults 18-49, ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy was also the highest-rated scripted series with Adults 18-34, Adults 25-54 and across all key Women (W18-34/W18-49/W25-54).  

ABC’s 20/20 qualified as the #1 newsmagazine of the week in Adults 18-49.  Growing its numbers for the 3rd week in a row, ABC surged week to week by 1.5 million viewers and by 19% in Adults 18-49.  In fact excluding the week of the Academy Awards, ABC marked its strongest results since November in viewers and young adults – since w/o 11/8/10 and 11/15/10, respectively.  In addition, the Net increased its overall audience year to year by 9%.

Monday: Winning the night for the 3rd week in a row, ABC scored another dominant Monday victory, actually beating the other major networks combined (CBS, NBC, and Fox) in Total Viewers, while matching the combined performance in Adults 18-49.  The Network won all 6 half-hours of the night in both viewers and young adults. 

Hitting a season-high on the night for the 2nd straight week, ABC generated the most-watched Monday for any network in 1 year – since 3/29/10.  Towering over each of its half-hours and ranking as Monday’s definitive #1 TV show for the 2nd  week in a row, ABC’s Dancing with the Stars overshadowed its nearest competition in its time period (CBS) by 16.3 million viewers and by 148% in Adults 18-49.  In fact it was ABC’s 6th straight week to lead the time period in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49 and its 9th straight week in Adults 18-34. 

DWTS’ audience jumped from its first hour to its second hour, gaining 2.8 million viewers and by 17% in Adults 18-49.  DWTS saw its overall audience increase over its week-ago season premiere, while retaining an impressive 98% of its premiere number in Adults 18-49.   Additionally, the broad-appealing ABC unscripted series was up over its high-rated season opener with Men 18-49 (+2%), Women 25-54 (+2%) and Kids 2-11 (+8%).  Monday’s #2 TV show to DWTS, ABC’s Castle turned in a strong first-place finish in the 10 o’clock hour in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49.  It was the ABC drama’s 3rd straight first-run telecast to win its time period on both Nielsen measures.  ABC’s Castle once again posted its biggest-ever winning advantage over an original episode of NBC’s Harry’s Law in the hour (+4.1 million viewers and +100% in Adults 18-49).  

Achieving season-highs in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49 for the 2nd week running, ABC’s Castle marked its largest audience since April 2010 and strongest young adult performance since March 2010 – since and 4/12/10 and 3/29/10, respectively.  In viewers and young adults, it was Castle’s 3rd consecutive original telecast to grow over the previous episode.

Tuesday: With a Dancing recap show, followed by the Season 12 premiere of DWTS Results Show leading into the series debut of Body of Proof, ABC took first place on Tuesday evening, upsetting second-place CBS’ all-original line up by 5% in Total Viewers and by 10% in Adults 18-49. 

In fact, DWTS Results stood as Tuesday’s #1 TV show and Body of Proof opened with a dominant victory in the 10 o’clock hour.  In Total Viewers and Adults 18-49, ABC marked its 2nd strongest Tuesday performance this season.  The Net grew its numbers from the same night last year (3/30/10), over an all-original schedule (DWTS Results/Lost/V), by 4.9 million viewers and 3% in Adults 18-49.  From 8-9pm, ABC’s special Dancing recap show (Dancing with the Stars: The Story So Far) ran a strong #2 to CBS’ top-rated NCIS, beating an original of NBC’s time-period regular The Biggest Loser:  Couples by solid margins in viewers (+5.9 million) and young adults (+12%). 

The recap show ranked #1 in the time period with Women 18-34, leading the first-run NCIS by an impressive 35%. DWTS: The Story So Far produced the Network’s top numbers in the time period in nearly 5 months with viewers and young adults – since 11/2/10.  Soaring to the top of the 9 o’clock hour to rank as Tuesday’s #1 TV show, the season premiere of ABC’s DWTS Results Show outpaced its nearest competitor (CBS’ NCIS: Los Angeles) by 4.0 million viewers and by 23% in Adults 18-49.  Radio host Mike Catherwood was the first celebrity voted off the show this season. 

DWTS Results Show rose sharply over its premiere on the same night last year, surging by 35% in Total Viewers and by 43% in Adults 18-49.  In fact it registered as the most-watched-ever season opener for DWTS Results Show.  In addition, Season 12 and Season 11 now stand as the franchise’s Top 2 most-watched premieres for the Results Show, respectively.  In Total Viewers and Adults 18-49, ABC posted its highest numbers in the time period since mid-November – since 11/23/10, with the Season 11 finale of DWTS.  In the 10 o’clock hour against established first-run dramas on CBS (The Good Wife) and NBC (Parenthood), ABC’s series debut of Body of Proof opened a definitive #1 in its time period. 

Taking full control of the hour, ABC’s Body of Proof beat out second-place CBS’ The Good Wife by 36% in Total Viewers and by a massive 63% in Adults 18-49.  Generating enormous time-period improvement, Body of Proof delivered ABC’s best results in the slot with a regular hour-long program in 6 years among Total Viewers, and in nearly 4-1/2 years among Adults 18-49 – since 3/1/05 and 10/17/06, respectively.  Versus ABC’s averages with regular programming in the hour this season, Body of Proof improved the time slot by 117% in Total Viewers and by 121% in Adults 18-49.  ABC’s Body of Proof qualified as TV’s 2nd-most-watched series debut of the 2010-11 season, behind only the September premiere of CBS’ high-profile reboot of Hawaii Five-0.  In addition, it was ABC’s most-watched midseason drama debut in 6 years and its top-rated among Adults 18-49 in more than 3 years – since 3/27/05 and 1/31/08, respectively.

Wednesday: From 8-9pm against the first hour of Fox’s American Idol and CBS’ Survivor: Redemption Island, ABC’s back-to-back repeats of The Middle defeated NBC’s original Minute To Win It by 14% in Total Viewers and by 25% in Adults 18-49.  The Middle replays built over their most-recent airing in the hour two weeks ago in both viewers (+4%) and young adults (+25%). 

At 9pm opposite the third half-hour of Idol and CBS’ original Criminal Minds, ABC’s repeat Modern Family dominated its repeat competition, topping NBC’s Law & Order: SVU by substantial margins in Viewers (+67%) and Adults 18-49 (+133%).  In addition, the rebroadcast ABC comedy tied CBS’ original drama in the time period with Adults 18-34, while beating Criminal Minds with Men 18-34. From 10-11pm against original drama competition on CBS (Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior) and NBC (Law & Order: SVU), ABC’s Off the Map once again drew a larger overall audience to the hour year to year for the Network, growing the time period by 5% from the year-ago night with original drama programming.  In fact it was the 11th time in 12 telecasts this season for ABC’s Off the Map to generate year-over-year time-period improvement. 

Thursday: ABC earned second place to an Idol-driven Fox on Thursday among Adults 18-49, beating CBS’ all-original schedule by 10%. In viewers and young adults, ABC scored its best Thursday results since mid-January – since 1/13/11.

The Network’s numbers rose over the year-ago night, also an evening of original programming (FlashForward/Grey’s/Private Practice on 4/1/10), by double-digit percentages in both Total Viewers (+18%) and Adults 18-49 (+28%).  From 8-9pm against American Idol and original comedies on CBS (The Big Bang Theory/Rules of Engagement), ABC’s Spring Wipeout outdelivered NBC’s comedies (Community/Perfect Couples) by wide margins in viewers (+205%) and young adults (+90%). In addition, the wide-appealing ABC unscripted series registered as the #2 broadcast program of the night with Kids 2-11, behind only Idol. Despite facing the move of Idol into the time period this year, the ABC unscripted series continued to produce double-digit year-to-year percentage growth in the hour with Total Viewers (+28%) and Adults 18-49 (+27%), over original programming on the year-ago evening (FlashForward).

Standing as Thursday’s #1 scripted TV show for the 2nd straight week, a musical episode of ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy won Thursday’s 9 o’clock hour in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49, beating Fox’s Idol-fueled debut of Mobbed by 29% and CBS’ original CSI by 69% in the key young adult sales demo. In fact Grey’s qualified as the #1 scripted series in the slot with Adults 18-49 for its 18th straight original broadcast this season. Building its numbers for the 2nd week running and hitting best-since-season-premiere results, Grey’s jumped over the prior week by 2.8 million viewers and by 32% in Adults 18-49.

The ABC medical drama achieved a 6-month high in viewers and young adults, marking its strongest performance since its season premiere in September – since 9/23/10. Grey’s was up sharply over its year-ago original telecast, gaining 32% in Total Viewers and 40% in Adults 18-49.  ABC’s Private Practice finished in a near-tie for #1 in the hour among Adults 18-49, pacing within 1-tenth of a rating point and tied in audience share with The Mentalist. ABC’s Private Practice won the hour among Adults 18-34, beating The Mentalist by 18%. In addition for its 17th consecutive first run telecast, the ABC drama registered as the #1 scripted TV show in the 10 o’clock hour with key Women (W18-34/W18-49). Among Adults 18-34 and Adults 18-49, Private Practice posted a 12-week high – since 1/6/11.

Friday: ABC finished in a virtual-tie for #1 among its broadcast rivals with CBS on Friday in Adults 18-49, pacing within 1-tenth of a rating point and tied in audience share.  ABC turned in a 7-week high on Friday in both Total Viewers and Adults 18-49 – since 2/11/11.  At 8pm, ABC’s Shark Tank grew over its week-ago premiere in both Total Viewers (+4%) and Adult 18-49s (+8%). 

Running #1 among the major nets in the hour with Adults 18-49, ABC’s Shark Tank beat out CBS’ series debut of Chaos by 9%.  Building audience throughout its broadcast, the ABC unscripted series gained viewers (+4%) and young adults (+16%) from its first half-hour to its second half-hour.  Shark Tank drew ABC’s largest audience in the time period in over 3 months – since 12/31/10. 

From 9-11pm, a 2-hour edition of ABC’s 20/20 earned second place against its rivals in its time period with Adults 18-49 and Adults 25-54, moving up into the #1 position to win the 10 o’clock hour among Adults 18-49.  Head to head, ABC’s 2-hour 20/20 defeated NBC’s 2-hour Dateline double digit percentages in Adults 18-49 (+15%) and Adults 25-54 (+11%).  20/20 featured Chris Cuomo’s exclusive report looking at how someone beat and left a young woman for dead, while managing to sneak out of a hotel with numerous security cameras. 

Building its numbers for the 2nd straight week, 20/20 generated its 2nd-strongest performance on the night since mid-February in Total Viewers, Adults 18-49 and Adults 25-54 – since 2/11/11.  20/20 was up from its delivery on the same night last year (4/2/10) by 14% in Total Viewers and by 23% in Adults 18-49.

Sunday: Up against CBS’ Academy of Country Music Awards on the night, ABC earned second place on Sunday in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49.   In viewers and young adults, ABC turned in its strongest Sunday in 1 month – since 3/6/11. During the 7 o’clock hour, ABC’s America’s Funniest Home Videos ranked #1 in Adults 18-49, Men 18-49 and Women 18-49. 

The broad-appealing also show made ABC the top-rated broadcaster in the hour with Kids 2-11.  Building sharply lead-in at 8pm in viewers (+3.0 million) and young adults (+69%) and gaining audience from start to finish against the opening hour of CBS’ ACM Awards, ABC’s Secret Millionaire defeated its regular competition in the hour by wide margins.   Once again, ABC’s freshman Secret Millionaire soared over its freshman unscripted time-period competition, outdelivering NBC’s America’s Next Great Restaurant by 5.8 million viewers and by 80% in Adults 18-49.  Generating sizeable year-over-year growth for ABC in the hour for its 5th time in 5 telecasts, Secret Millionaire boosted the time period by 2.9 million viewers and by 35% in Adults 18-49 over the year-ago night (4/4/10) with original programming. 

Secret Millionaire was up week to week with Men 18-49, Teens 12-17 and Kids 2-11. On its first original telecast in 4 weeks, ABC’s Desperate Housewives returned as the #1 regular show in the 9 o’clock hour with Total Viewers and Adults 18-49. During the 10 o’clock hour on the heels of its big Tuesday debut, a special airing of ABC’s Body of Proof gained substantial additional sampling on Sunday night.  Retaining nearly all of its lead-in from Desperate Housewives (93%), Body of Proof attracted ABC’s biggest non-Oscar audience in the hour in nearly 4 months  – since 12/12/10.

(source; ABC)