‘Pretty Little Liars’ Returns Strong for ABC Family, Sets TV Series Record for Tweets

Despite facing NBC's live 'The Voice,' it's Tuesday's No. 1 show in young-female demos

pretty little liars

ABC Family’s “Pretty Little Liars,” one of television’s most unheralded ratings hits, performed very well as it kicked off its fourth season Tuesday night — standing as cable’s No. 1 series in key demos and setting a Twitter record in the process.

It also helped provide more strong sampling for new drama “Twisted,” which airs after “Liars.”

According to Nielsen estimates, “Pretty Little Liars” averaged a 1.3 rating/4 share in adults 18-49 — up 16% from last summer’s premiere — and 2.97 million viewers overall. It was television’s No. 1 program of the night in females 12-34 (4.1 rating or 1.85 million viewers in the demo) and cable’s No. 1 show of the night in 18-49, 18-34 and teens.

In persons 12-34, “PLL’s” 2.3 rating (2.11 million viewers in the demo) put it a tick behind NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” as the night’s No. 1 series on television.

And among all drama telecasts on basic cable or broadcast in recent months, “PLL” edged out ABC’s “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy” season finales from last month to draw the largest 12-34 audience since the season finale of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” on March 31.

According to social media tracking company SocialGuide, the premiere of “Pretty Little Liars” became the “most-tweeted” season premiere in TV history, amassing nearly 1.3 million tweets by more than 482,000 unique contributors — surpassing the recent premiere of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” in February by 29%.

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At 9 p.m., the pilot episode of “Twisted” averaged a 0.5 rating in 18-49 and 1.61 million viewers overall, also drawing the best numbers in persons 12-34 (996,000) and adults 18-34 (510,000) for the premiere of an ABC Family series  since the launch of “The Nine Lives of Chloe King” in June 2011. It was up from the 1.2 million who tuned in when the show initially aired as a series preview on the night of last season’s “PLL” finale in March.

“Twisted,” which had been titled “Socio” earlier in the development process, focuses on 16-year-old Danny Desai, who returns to his hometown after killing his aunt five years prior when he was 11 years old.

Airing opposite “Twisted” was OWN drama “The Haves and Have-Nots” (0.5/1 in 18-49, 1.31m), which was up vs. last week by 2% in 18-49 and 15% in women 25-54.

Discovery’s “Deadliest Catch” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 2.83m) was cable’s No. 1 program of the night in key male demos.

ABC dominated Tuesday overall with Game 3 of the NBA Finals (5.8/17 in 18-49, 14.05 million viewers overall), which performed about the same as the series’ first two games. This year’s Heat-Spurs pairing continues to lag behind last year’s averages when the Heat faced the Thunder.

NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” (3.0/8 in 18-49, 11.52m) and “The Voice” (2.9/10 in 18-49, 10.66m) were the night’s top series in 18-49 and total viewers.