Ratings: ABC’s ‘Scandal,’ ‘How to Get Away With Murder’ Fade Further Thursday

Ratings: ABC's 'Scandal,' 'How to Get
Courtesy of ABC

A rough winter for ABC continued Thursday when its signature night of dramas fell to its lowest average to date and slipped behind both Fox and CBS in the young adults demo. Also of note, NBC’s “You, Me and the Apocalypse” fell to dangerously low ratings and may be in danger of exiting the schedule, but the net’s new drama “Shades of Blue” continues to perform solidly.

According to preliminary national estimates, ABC was led once again by leadoff hitter “Grey’s Anatomy” (2.2/8 in 18-49, 7.8 million viewers overall), which was down a modest 0.2 from its winter premiere of last week and placed second for its hour in key demos; it matched its season low. Seeing steeper declines and losing competitive ground in their timeslots, though, were “Scandal” (1.7/6 in 18-49, 6.1 million viewers overall) and “How to Get Away With Murder” (1.4/5 in 18-49, 4.8 million viewers overall), which combined to draw about half as many adults under 50 as the comparable night a year ago.

“Scandal” placed second for its hour in 18-49, behind “American Idol,” and finished only a bit ahead of CBS comedies; it was down 0.4 from last week (though possibly 0.3 in the finals as it currently sits at 1.75) to a series low. Also down 0.4 to its low was “Murder,” though it was able to remain the series leader for its hour in 18-49 and 25-54 (1.8/5) and is easily the top-rated 10 p.m. performer for the net across this week.

While ABC finished third for the night in 18-49, it was close enough in the prelims (0.1 behind CBS and 0.2 behind Fox) that it could emerge on top with three days’ of delayed viewing included. Last week, the network finished in a tie with Fox for the lead in the prelims but ended up pulling away from the net in Live+3 by 32%.

Elsewhere, CBS held strong opening the night with “The Big Bang Theory” (3.7/13 in 18-49, 14.9 million viewers overall), which appears poised to match last week’s score and was Thursday’s No. 1 program in 18-49 by a whopping 68% margin. Also on par with last week were “Life in Pieces” (2.1/7 in 18-49, 9.5 million viewers overall) and “Mom” (1.8/6 in 18-49, 8.7 million viewers overall), while the time period debut of “2 Broke Girls” (1.5/5 in 18-49, 6.4 million viewers overall) looks to be a slight improvement over previous slot occupant “Angel From Hell.” At 10 p.m., “Elementary” dipped a tenth (1.0/4 in 18-49, 5.9 million viewers overall), winning its hour in total viewers.

At NBC, “You Me and the Apocalypse” (0.6/2 in 18-49, 2.6 million viewers overall) dropped 0.2 to deliver half of its passable premiere rating of last month. Its decline seemed to drag down “The Blacklist” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 5.9 million viewers overall), which hit a season low, but “Shades of Blue” held steady at 10 p.m. (1.1/4 in 18-49, 5.3 million viewers overall). Last week, both dramas shot up by more than 80% in Live+3.

The Jennifer Lopez-Ray Liotta drama “Shades of Blue” continues to perform solidly for the network, moving ahead of “Elementary” in 18-49 and surpassing “How to Get Away With Murder” in total viewers. Specifically in the demo, NBC was able to close a gap that was a big 2.0 ratings points in 18-49 a year ago to just 0.3 last night.

Fox’s two-hour “American Idol” (2.0/7 in 18-49, 8.1 million viewers overall) was down a tick from last week and tied with ABC for second place from 8 to 10 in 18-49. For a second straight week, it was soft opening the night opposite “The Big Bang Theory,” before spiking and holding pretty steady over its final 90 minutes.

At CW, “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” (0.8/3 in 18-49, 2.3 million viewers overall) was down a tenth, while “The 100” (0.5/2 in 18-49, 1.4 million viewers overall) held steady. “Legends” saw some nice growth in adults 18-34 (0.8/3) and men 18-34 (1.0/5), rising to some of its best numbers since its first two weeks.



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  1. Natalie says:

    These comments are hilarious , if you don’t like her shows don’t watch! I love all her shows she is an impeccable writer, with a great imagination! I love shonda I’m with her 100%, no one cares if you don’t like her shows watch something else!

  2. loco73 says:

    It wouldn’t be that this is happening because her shows were overhyped mediocrities and sucked ass in the first place wouldn’t it?! Not it’s because of something else…cue Shonda Rimes complaining of discrimination in 3, 2, 1…

    • Janet says:

      Scandal was excellent in the first two seasons. Then she brings in two completely useless characters — Jake and Rowan — and the show went down the tubes. Also, she decided to swap good plot likes and characterization for WTF moments that quickly got boring and pointless.

    • dwb says:

      Yeah because after so many seasons…..? So sick of the hypocrisy when it comes to woman of power. You people have your head so far up your tight azzes that you can’t stomach successful, intelligent females, especially FOC! You’re probably some unfortunately no talent hack who didn’t have what it takes to make it. Grow up and concentrate on doing something positive in your life.

  3. Boaz says:

    The Broadcast live +3 ratings shows that all the TGIT ratings moved dramatically up. Viewers like to DVR these shows!

  4. Sandra says:

    Ouch Scandal ratings are tanking Shonda Rhimes has only herself to blame, she better start listening to the fans or she’s going to find that nobody will be watching her shows accept maybe GA.

  5. Cena Gomez says:

    Shonda Rhimes is so full of herself she truly believe Scandal would survive without Olitz the same way Grey’s survived without Derek. The woman do not know her audience. Most people started watching Scandal because of the Olivia and Fitz love story. You take that away, you have just a mediocre boring show. Where is the intrigue, excitement, buzz, and story? They keep trying to force chemistry with Jake and Olivia and over and over they fail. Fans were angry about the abortion plot device that came out of nowhere without any explanation. Fans knew Shonda only did it to shock and get brownie points from feminist groups like Planned parenthood. Fans were angry after 509 and they were still angry when the show returned. The four million fans who have tuned out since season 5 started have had enough of the writers alienating the fans. At Last was promised…Fitz got his divorce…but then Shonda got stupid again. I hope the ratings continue to crash and burn.

  6. Burro b says:

    Perhaps it cuz these shows suck. And they are Overrated and loved by out of touch paid off critics.

  7. Marie says:

    On one side, it’s too bad for the actors but the writing is horrid. I cringe now even seeing the commercials at how bad Scandal has become.
    Used to watch Grey’s and Scandal, gave up with what sounds like many other viewers. I’m not sure who likes this version of drama, but it’s not my cup of tea so I swore off Murder as well as the upcoming Catch. To watch, grow to love characters then have them destroyed isn’t my idea of entertainment.

  8. rick o says:

    Even tho I know it is past its’ prime a,nd run its course, I still enjoy watching GA. But i already know next weeks ep is gonna blow. The Kepner/Jackson story line is tired and just plain irritating. Scandal and HTGAWM are simply unwatchable. Too bad Shonda.

  9. Janet says:

    Shonda Rhimes refuses to listen to constructive criticism from her audience. All she can do is post snide comments on Twitter such as “Don’t tweet me your crazy” and “If you don’t like the show [Scandal] don’t watch it. She got her wish; the audience has taken her at her word. People are so turned off by her nasty attitude that they are bailing on anything with her name on it. I suspect “The Catch” may be in deep trouble. People are already saying they will not watch it.

    • C.perry says:

      Co- sign It’s shameful you have a WOC to get a big break in opportunity like SR she could use her platform in a more pisitive way it serm at first she was with Kerry as the first blk lead actress on network tv since Dinane C. from the sixties….But SR started letting her ego get in her way being mean to fans telling them not to watch if they don’t like her show…For the life of myself Why alienated the ppl that keep you going to the bank?, SR has a problem in my opinion It seem she has favortism of her employees shes DEMOTED Kerry and Tony her leads started out to put the actors in front thats declining the show..being a WOC you wouldn’t think she would write her lead blk actress so degrading and unapologetic …this SR…in interviews she label her blk actress character as THOTS …What? all that OMG is not helping either
      This show will continue to decline as long as shes running it

      • Janet says:

        She’s trying to turn Scandal into “The Rowan, Jake and Mellie Show”, and nobody signed on to watch that. Shonda has run out of rabbits to pull out of her hat and the show is crashing and burning. She has no one but herself to blame if “The Catch” arrives DOA.

      • dwb says:

        Nasty attitude? Wow so the fans can say all the nasty things they want about her show but if she throws it back at them she’s the one with the nasty attitude??? So sick of the fake azz hypocrites criticizing this woman’s work because they don’t like the way the story plays out. There are so many other shows on TV that do the same thing, but no one seems to take it as personal as they do with Shonda. I’m with her 1000%, she has plenty of people who love the way her shows are performing, unfortunately negativity is the only thing certain people fill up on. GFY! TEAM SHONDA!

  10. Rose Flores says:

    I loved Scandal when Olivia & Fitz were the main characters . Episode 509 really traumatized me. It was so disappointing that I cannot watch a Scandal episode again. The storyline is so crazy. Tearing the Fitz & Olivia team apart was so disheartening. And I know there are millions of fans like me. So there you go with the ratings.

  11. Veronica says:

    ABC need fresh writers on all three TGIT! All three SR drama pieces are losing steam…nothing to make you “I can’t wait”. HTGAWM took a wrong turn…it should stay on cases and not venture back to the past. SCANDAL should not have befriend TPOTUS wife…they should always, always be at odds! And GA should show a bold side of dr Grey, dating men looking for a father for her children — she need to be at odds with some powerful people or threatens somebody! We need suspense! We need to be on the edge of our seats…again!

  12. Lagtexas says:

    Thursday night used to be my night. Don’t call me, bother me, leave me alone! My show night. This season ABC has not only jumped the shark it has jumped the ocean. Grey’s has run its course. Murder has gone psychotic. Scandal lost its way and story line. Last straw was abortion with Christmas music in background and I’m pro-choice! I didn’t come back for the winter shows. I’m not even recording the programs. Looks like I’m not the only one.

  13. DDD says:

    Scandal is in decline because it has veered too far away from the premise of the story. Fitz and Olivia and her fixer business was the main focus. It has introduced too many bazaar storylines, such as B613 and too many characters. But, the real decline started when Jake entered the picture. Get rid of Jake immediately and Papa Pope, bring back Hollis Doyle, and put Olivia back in love with Fitz and I can assure you that Scandal ratings will improve greatly.

  14. singsongsoy says:

    Scandal is promoting sex as love. NO it is not. Everyone is humping one another. Premise of the show was the LOVE story of Olitz. Not all the others humping. The further away the show veers from Olitz into spy, NSA, ridiculous girl-power crap the more it will fail. Ppl fell in love with Fitz/Olivia. Now that the showrunner is trying to make the switch, it will be the demise of Scandal. Clever, imaginative writing might bring back the allure of that magical couple and with it some previous fans. Nothing else will work.

  15. Cat says:

    The slide is probably because both shows are pure trash. Good to see that having a televised abortion while Christmas music plays has had severe repercussions.

  16. Petra says:

    Scandal is awful. It’s a shell of the show it was during the first couple seasons.

  17. Mookie Glenn says:

    Scandal is terrible right now, so it’s ratings drop isn’t surprising.

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