Okay, yours truly hasn’t done a winners and losers listing lately. Because finding winners in this industry is too hard to find? T Dog’s Six Pack is back with a hot Blackhawks team, while unless you’re CBS, network television has gone ice cold.
The Chicago Blackhawks. This team is so hot, they’re practically melting the ice they play on! The Blackhawks set the record for the best start in NHL history – seventeen games without a regulation loss. And they’re setting records in the ratings books, too: Tuesday night’s game against the hated Vancouver Canucks drew the highest rating ever for a regular-season game on Comcast SportsNet with a 7.4 household rating, with a peak of 10.91 at 10:15 p.m., when the two teams were in a shootout. In addition, CSN beat all broadcast and cable networks for the night, topping shows such as NCIS: Los Angeles, New Girl, and the debut of Cult (see below) in households, adults 18-49, and adults 25-54.
Odds are this record will fall once Friday night’s numbers come in. I’ll keep you posted. Go Hawks!
Chicago Sun-Times (yes, you’re reading this right). Props to the Sun-Times for finally arriving in the 21st Century – the Wrapports-owned newspaper has signed Carol Marin to anchor a 90-second daily newscast, shot from the Sun-Times’ television studios. This is part of a new initiative to produce video content for all of Wrapports’ properties, Sun-Times included.
The Walking Dead. Speaking of hot, the AMC zombie-apocalypse series recently drew some impressive numbers against the snoozefest known as the Grammys – a record 12.3 million viewers, scoring better numbers than most broadcast prime-time shows for the week. And the phrase Walking Dead has officially become a pop-culture catchphrase: the term is used to describe NBC (see below.)
NBC. Like the Blackhawks, NBC is also setting records – but of the wrong kind. The Peacock network’s prime-time lineup is likely to come in fifth in the February sweeps in adults 18-49 – even behind Spanish-language net Univision – with what is believed to be the worst performance in the network’s history. In November, the network reclaimed the top spot thanks to the strength of Sunday Night Football and The Voice (oh well, time to dust off the Fred Silverman jokes again.) This comes as the broadcast networks – excluding CBS, who had the Super Bowl and the Grammys – are down from last year.
Survivor: Fans vs. Favorites. Again. And even CBS had some rough spots as well – This current edition of Survivor once again pits Fans vs. Favorites (again) and the “favorites” are mostly returning losers fans love to hate (Phillip, Brandon Hantz, even bringing back a contestant who was voted out first because she hated Phillip – and she got voted out first again.) Egads, this is the worst casting I’ve ever seen.
Along with the hallmarks of long-drawn out boring strategy sessions, stereotypical black contestants, and numerous missteps over the last several years (last fall’s edition the exception) – not to mention declining ratings – maybe its time for Survivor to either be cut back to one cycle per year – or to end altogether. The overrated Mark Burnett (who recently flopped with the inane The Job) needs to regain his “golden touch” (“their” words, not mine – personally, I can’t stand the guy.) As for this current edition of Survivor, I find the current edition a pathetic waste of time and a joke, much like watching an episode of Maury or Jerry Springer. The only difference is at least the hosts of these two trash talkers aren’t arrogant pieces of shit like the host of Survivor is, whose phony-baloney daytime talk show was recently canceled.
Cult. As expected, CW’s new thriller about delusional fans of a TV show bombed in its debut. But what no one expected was how bad it would bomb. Ratings for its debut Tuesday night scored a 0.6 household rating/1 share, with a 0.3/1 in adults 18-49, 0.4/1 in adults 25-54, and a 0.2/1 in adults 18-34 and women 18-34 (Cult also reportedly scored a 0.0/0 in female teens, according to a tweet.) Cult drew just 863,000 viewers – drawing fewer viewers than many cable shows that aired that evening, including reruns of The Big Bang Theory and as mentioned above, a Blackhawks game locally. In all fairness, CW offered little or no promotion of the show.
In fact, an NBA game between the New Orleans Hornets (20-37) and the Cleveland Cavaliers (18-38) on ESPN the following night drew 1.2 million viewers. Cult couldn’t even beat a matchup between two bad NBA teams!
As for Cult, credit them for trying something different. But the writers blew it by not giving us enough info about the characters, or why they were investigating the show to begin with (yes, I know the guy’s brother disappeared, but that’s a little too vague.) With a 46 Metacritic rating, reviewers dismissed Cult as too confusing and complex.
The only thing memorable from Cult is this rather bizarre quote when someone said “Hey, these things just snap right off”, before she blew her brains out.
You’d probably do the same thing if you knew the show you were working on is being outrated by 45-year old Big Valley reruns.