You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Quiet start for ABC’s ‘Duets’

Latest singing show bested in demos by Fox's 'Dance'

ABC dove into a crowded singing pool with modest results Thursday as the debut of competition series ”Duets” finished a distant second in young adults among the broadcasters. Fox won the night with its return of ”So You Think You Can Dance,” but it was down sharply year to year.

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, ”Duets” averaged a 1.7 rating/5 share in adults 18-49 and 6.7 million viewers overall from 8 to 10 p.m., with the show bowing less than 22 hours after Fox’s ”American Idol” wrapped its longest and lowest-rated season to date. In adults 18-49, ”Duets” performed nearly 50% better than the repeats ABC aired in the same two hours a year ago, but was well below the 2.4 demo rating delivered by the net’s Thursday premieres of last summer (returning ”Wipeout” and new ”Expedition Impossible”).

”Duets” was no match in demos for Fox’s ”So You Think You Can Dance” (2.4/8 in 18-49, 6.2 million viewers overall), with the Fox show prevailing in their head-to-head matchup by 41% in 18-49 (2.4 vs. 1.7) and by a larger 75% in the younger, 18-34 half of the demo (2.1 vs. 1.2); the gaps in both categories were larger in the final, 9:30 half-hour as the Fox show picked up steam while ABC’s stalled. ”Duets” was most competitive among women 25-54, with its 3.1 rating just a tick behind the Fox show. ”Dance” itself was down 32% from its bow on the same night a year ago, when it faced no original Big Four competition, but was up from the 2.0 it averaged for its finale in August.

Elsewhere on the night, ABC’s returning drama ”Rookie Blue” had a decent debut at 10 p.m. (1.4/4 in 18-49, 6.0 million viewers overall), down 13% from last year’s late-June bow, which enjoyed a stronger lead-in. The Canadian-produced cop drama finished a tick behind a repeat of CBS’ ”The Mentalist” in 18-49 (1.5/4, 7.8 million viewers overall) and outperformed the finale of NBC drama ”Awake” (0.9/2 in 18-49, 2.9 million viewers overall), which did bounce up some for its finale.

CBS’ all-repeat, regular lineup tied ABC’s all-original lineup in adults 18-49, led by ”The Big Bang Theory” (2.3/8 in 18-49, 8.3 million viewers overall) and ”Rules of Engagement” (1.7/6 in 18-49, 6.3 million viewers overall). Also for the net, ”Person of Interest” averaged a 1.4/4 in 18-49 and 7.8 million viewers overall in the 9 o’clock hour, and ”The Mentalist” wrapped things up at 10 with a timeslot victory among the broadcasters (1.5/4 in 18-49, 3.8 million viewers overall).

NBC struggled, generating its best numbers for a repeat of ”America’s Got Talent” at 9 p.m. (1.2/4 in 18-49, 3.8 million viewers overall); it was the fifth time in the last six nights that the show had aired on the net, either in original or repeat.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: Fox, 2.4/8; ABC and CBS, 1.6/5; Univision, 1.2/4; NBC, 0.9/3;

In total viewers: CBS, 7.6 million; ABC, 6.5 million; Fox, 6.2 million; Univision, 3.2 million; NBC, 2.9 million; CW, 0.7 million.

More TV

  • School of American Ballet, The Nutcracker

    Imagine Documentaries Teams With School of American Ballet, DCTV for 'On Pointe' Series

    Imagine Documentaries has partnered with DCTV and School of American Ballet for “On Pointe,” a docu series offering an inside look at the rigorous training program at the nation’s foremost school for ballet professionals. The deal calls for Imagine to work with DCTV and the School of American Ballet on a series chronicling the pursuit [...]

  • Emmys: Second Annual FYC Independents Screenings

    Emmys: 'All American,' 'Atypical,' 'Vida' Actors Among Lineup for Second Annual FYC Independents Screenings (EXCLUSIVE)

    The FYC Independents Screenings will take place Friday, May 31 in Van Nuys, Calif, Variety has learned exclusively. Formerly the FYC U.S. Independents, this evening of screenings and schmoozing with talent from series such as the CW’s “All American,” Netflix’s “Atypical” and Starz’ “Vida” is thrown by actress and producer Meredith Thomas to increase visibility [...]

  • Lester Holt

    Chris Berend Tapped to Oversee NBC News' Digital Efforts

    Chris Berend, an executive who has been overseeing digital video for CNN and helped launch Great Big Story, a streaming-video site aimed at younger audiences, will jump to NBC News to lead its digital efforts. Berend will replace Nick Ascheim, who will move into a new role that is described as “improving digital and product [...]

  • Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon - The

    CAA's Packaging Fee Becomes Flashpoint in 'Walking Dead' Litigation

    The issue that is at the heart of the WGA’s present standoff with talent agencies has flared up as a source of tension in the litigation between AMC Networks and Frank Darabont and CAA over profit participation on “The Walking Dead.” The practice of talent agencies receiving packaging fees for helping to assemble the creative [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content