Ratings: Spielberg’s ‘Extant’ Is Summer’s Top Premiere, But It’s No ‘Under the Dome’

Extant TV Review

UPDATE: In updated Nielsen national estimates released Thursday afternoon, CBS drama “Extant” was revised down to a 1.6/5 in adults 18-49 while its total-viewer count went up to 9.58 million. The 1.6 means it ties with NBC’s May 27 launch of “The Night Shift” as the summer’s top series premiere in 18-49.

Elsewhere, NBC’s “Taxi Brooklyn” was revised down a tenth (0.9/3 in 18-49, 4.62 million viewers overall) while ABC’s “Motive” gained a tenth (0.9/3 in 18-49, 4.15 million viewers overall), meaning the shows were in a demo draw.

Airing in the same hour, FX’s second-season premiere of “The Bridge” did a 0.5 rating in adults 18-49 and 1.5 million viewers overall — down from its year-ago debut of 0.9 and 3.04 million, and more in line with its Oct. 2 finale (0.54 rating in 18-49, 1.43 million viewers overall).

Wednesday afternoon’s Argentina-Netherlands soccer game drew 6.82 million viewers on ESPN, edging past the previous day’s Germany-Brazil blowout (6.64 million) as ESPN’s most-watched FIFA World Cup semifinal ever.


One year after its “Under the Dome” became the biggest new summer series in 20 years, CBS introduced Halle Berry starrer “Extant” — produced by Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment and CBS Television Studios — to good but unspectacular numbers Wednesday.

It’s the summer’s top new series premiere in both demos and total viewers, though it pales in comparison to “Dome” — especially in young adults.

The sci-fi series “Extant” averaged a 1.7 rating/6 share in adults 18-49 and 9.4 million viewers overall in the 9 o’clock hour, according to preliminary “Live plus same-day” estimates from Nielsen. It was the night’s No. 2 program in 18-49, behind lead-in “Big Brother” (1.9/7) and No. 1 in both adults 25-54 (2.4/7) and total viewers, gaining about 3 million total viewers from the reality veteran.

Prior to “Extant,” summer’s top “Live plus same-day” scripted series premieres in 18-49 had been NBC’s “The Night Shift” (1.6), NBC’s “Undateable” (1.3) and TNT’s “The Last Ship” (1.2). “Night Shift” was also tops in total viewers (7.67 million).

Though a solid number, “Extant” was well below the monster 3.3 rating/9 share in 18-49 and 13.53 million total viewers generated by the “Under the Dome” premiere of last summer. Last month, “Dome” returned with a 2.1/7 in 18-49 and 9.41 million viewers overall, jumping to a 3.2 rating and 13.2 million total viewers in “Live plus-3” numbers.

CBS won Wednesday’s ratings race, sweeping the night’s half-hours in 18-49. “Big Brother” was up a tick from last week, and “Extant” helped provide a strong lead-in for a “Criminal Minds” repeat at 10 (1.2/4 in 18-49, 6.5 million viewers overall), as the drama moves into its new summer time period.

Elsewhere, Fox’s “So You Think You Can Dance” (1.2/4 in 18-49, 3.7 million viewers overall) was down two-tenths from last week to a series low, bested by an encore of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” (1.5/5 in 18-49, 6.0 million viewers overall). “Talent” nearly caught “Extant” in 18-49 for the 9 o’clock hour (1.6 vs. 1.7), where it will be airing original episodes starting July 23.

Following “Talent,” new drama “Taxi Brooklyn” continues to do OK for NBC (1.0/3 in 18-49, 4.7 million viewers overall), matching the demo rating of its first two telecasts and beating out ABC’s original crime drama “Motive” (0.8/3 in 18-49, 3.9 million viewers overall), which matched its prior original in 18-49.

CW aired the “iHeart Radio Ultimate Pool Party” (0.3/1 in 18-49, 0.8 million viewers overall) and a repeat of “Whose Line Is It Anyway” (0.2/1 in 18-49, 0.7 million viewers overall).

Wednesday afternoon’s Argentina-Netherlands soccer match earned a 4.3 overnight household rating on ESPN, edging out the 4.1 the previous day for Germany-Brazil to become the highest-rated FIFA World Cup semifinal match ever on the network. Of course, yesterday’s contest was a nail-biter that wasn’t decided until penalty kicks, while Germany’s victory over Brazil (7-1) was never in doubt after about 20 minutes of action.

Preliminary primetime 18-49 averages for the night: CBS, 1.6/6; NBC, 1.3/5; Fox and Univision, 1.2/4; ABC, 1.0/3; Telemundo, 0.6/2; CW, 0.3/1.

In total viewers: CBS, 7.3 million; NBC, 5.5 million; ABC, 3.8 million; Fox, 3.7 million; Univision, 2.9 million; Telemundo, 1.4 million; CW, 0.8 million.

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  1. AHJ says:

    This article isn’t correct. Black Box premiered with a 1.5 and 6.872 million viewers.

  2. NOLA Viewer says:

    Watched EXTANT last night and found it to be VERY interesting. I like all the main actors and am hoping it is a success. The show is really good.

  3. It’s called formula writing. There are so many authors today who do this today also, writing the same book over and over again. I call Mad-Libs for some of today’s authors. I won’t name any names but they know who they are as well as you.

  4. MichaelZ says:

    Let me get this straight, according to Variety/Nielsen, one-fifth of a ratings point is more valuable than 3.3 million viewers? LMAO And geez, SYTYCD hits another all time low. Alert the media!

  5. SFSolstice says:

    …and what does that say about young American television viewers?

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