The first week of the 2011-12 season is almost in the books, and the early returns have been a decidedly mixed bag for new shows.
CBS’ “2 Broke Girls” had a fantastic opening behind a sky-high “Two and a Half Men,” but “Free Agents” stumbled badly in its time-period debut on NBC. “Revenge” was pretty solid for ABC, but “Charlie’s Angels” was a little shaky. For every “Unforgettable” there was a “Prime Suspect.”
Several new series have yet to make their debuts, and any of them could unexpectedly soar or tank in the coming weeks. But as things stand right now, here are a few shows that seem in danger of having the moniker “short-lived” attached to them.
“Free Agents”: Its Wednesday night lead-in, “Up All Night,” survived a seriously competitive timeslot with decent numbers (a little over 6 million viewers and a 2.4 rating among adults 18-49). “Free Agents,” though, bled almost half of the 18-49 audience and failed to break 4 million viewers. Not a good sign.
“Charlie’s Angels”: ABC touted its ratings gains over last season, but you know what aired on ABC at 8 p.m. ET Thursday last fall? “My Generation,” which was one of the early casualties of last season and was replaced by “Grey’s Anatomy” reruns. If the show can hold relatively steady in the coming weeks, it might be OK, but the margin for error is not a very big one.
“The Playboy Club”: Neither this show (5 million viewers) nor “Prime Suspect” (6 million) made much of a dent in the audiences for the established shows in their respective time periods. NBC sunk a good amount of money into marketing both shows and therefore may be inclined toward patience, but we’d bet “Prime Suspect,” which was better reviewed and, more importantly, is also produced by NBC Universal (20th Century Fox is behind “The Playboy Club”), has a better chance.
“H8R”: No one was expecting breakout ratings from The CW’s reality series. But even by CW standards, its numbers (1.2 million viewers through two episodes) are pretty meager. It’s also not giving much help to “America’s Next Top Model,” which has been way down in its first couple episodes.
“Person of Interest”: Say what now? How can a show that premiered to 13 million-plus viewers be in trouble? In truth, it’s probably not. But CBS executives repeatedly raved about the show being its highest-testing pilot in years, and it didn’t really do any better than a typical episode of the decade-old “CSI” did in its timeslot last year. If it declines much in the coming weeks, we wouldn’t be shocked to see the network move it to a different timeslot.
Which show do you think will be the first one canceled this season? Have it out in the comments.