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‘90210,’ ‘Real’ sluggish

Series' premiere, skein's debut disappoint

A slow summer may already be turning into a slow fall for Fox, which has settled for a sluggish start from the new Wednesday series “Get Real” and the lowest-rated season premiere ever for “Beverly Hills 90210.”

“Get Real” debuted Sept. 8 with a 5.7 rating, 9 share in homes and a 3.9/11 in adults 18-49, disappointing startup numbers that rep a 24% 18-49 plunge vs. the previous hour’s “90210” (6.5/12 in homes, 5.1/17 in adults 18-49). Last season, “Real’s” slot predecessor, “Party of Five,” improved over its 18-49 lead-in from “90210” by an average of 5%.

Another negative sign for “Real” was its 10% 18-49 falloff from the comedy-drama’s first half-hour to the second (from a 4.1 rating to a 3.7), suggesting some curious viewers were unimpressed with the show’s premiere.

At 8 p.m., the homes rating for “90210’s” 10th-season debut plunged by 19% vs. year-ago results, for the Aaron Spelling drama’s lowest-rated premiere to date.

On the positive side, Fox won the night in adults 18-49 (vs. mostly rerun fare), with “Real” leading its hour in adults 18-34, women 18-34 and teens. “Real” built on its “90210” lead-in among teens by 5% (4.4 rating vs. 4.2).

Fox is introducing an ambitious lineup this fall with significant schedule changes coming on six of the week’s seven nights and about 40% of the sked comprised of new series.

One of the biggest gambles is the switch of “Party of Five” from Wednesdays to Tuesdays. “Get Real’s” slow start (down 30% from “Party’s” year-ago premiere in homes) suggests Fox will pay a price Wednesday for any gains “Party” brings to Tuesdays.

The Murdoch net has been quiet over the summer to date, slipping by 6% in households (with an average 4.5 rating vs. last year’s 4.8).

NBC won Wednesday in homes with typical summer fare. In adults 18-49, Fox topped ABC’s mostly rerun lineup by 2 shares.

Each household rating point represents an estimated 994,000 homes, or 1% of the country’s TV households. Each adults 18-49 rating point reps 1.239 million viewers, 1% of the U.S. total. A share is the same sort of percentage, except it’s measured against only the homes or viewers watching TV during the timeslot involved.