Reality skein plugs 'Brimstone' hole

“Guinness World Records” broke none in its first Friday try, but Fox’s gross-out reality series did bring encouraging improvements vs. slot predecessor “Brimstone.”

In March 19 preliminary Nielsens, “Guinness” recorded a 4.7 rating, 8 share in households and a 3.0/10 in adults 18-49. That 18-49 score kept Fox fourth for the 8-9 p.m. hour, 4 shares out of the lead, but it was the net’s best result in the slot with nonmovie fare since May 1, 1998 (“Beyond Belief”). And that surge came vs. CBS’ college basketball, which no doubt stole much of “Guinness’ ” core young-male audience.

Compared with its season-to-date 18-49 average on Tuesdays (a higher viewership night), this first Friday “Guinness” declined by 30% (3.0 vs. 4.3), but vs. Fox’s average for this new Friday slot, “Guinness” logged a 25% leap (3.0 vs. 2.4).

Millennial bump

The reality series’ arrival also apparently helped Fox’s 9-10 p.m. entry, “Millennium” (a prelim 4.1/7 in homes, 3.1/9 in adults 18-49), which locked up its best 18-49 average in four airings.

NBC is expected to win Friday in homes, but the 18-49 race between the Peacock’s “Providence”-led lineup and CBS’ hoops was too close to call based on prelim results.

ABC’s fading “T.G.I.F.” lineup was an uncompetitive third in homes and adults 18-49, with “Two of a Kind” (a prelim 6.5/12 in homes, 2.9/10 in adults 18-49) and “Boy Meets World” (a prelim 6.4/11 in homes, 3.0/10 in adults 18-49) bowing to their lowest figures since Christmas night.

In Saturday prelims, Fox’s regulars remained first in adults 18-49, but a basketball overrun helped keep CBS ahead in homes.

Thursday went to NBC, as usual. That night’s college hoops finished with a 4.1/12 in adults 18-49 from 8-11 p.m., down 2% from year-ago results.

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