Despite going up against broadcast premieres on Tuesday, OWN drama “The Haves and the Have Nots” closed out its season by skyrocketing to series-high ratings and setting network records. It wasn’t a good night, though, for FX’s “The Bastard Executioner,” which tumbled in its second week.
According to Nielsen national estimates, Tyler Perry soap “The Haves and the Have Nots” averaged a 1.19 rating in adults 18-49 and 3.71 million viewers overall — up 50% in the demo (from 0.79) and by 18% in total viewers week to week. These are the highest scores in the 61-episode history of the show, topping its previous high in the demo (1.13 rating in February 2014) by 5% and outdrawing its previous high in overall viewers (3.50 million for its spring finale earlier this year) by 6%.
Other than “Fear the Walking Dead,” the only scripted series telecast on cable since the start of summer to draw a higher 18-49 rating than last night’s “Haves” was the season finale of ABC Family’s “Pretty Little Liars” (1.39).
Not only was the “Haves and the Have Nots” the No. 1 cable show of the night, but it tied with a pair of older-skewing broadcast series — ABC’s “Dsncing With the Strs” and CBS’ “NCIS: New Orleans” — in the younger 18-34 half of 18-49 (0.9 rating). And “Haves” helped funnel a sizable audience into the season premiere of another Perry drama, “If Loving You Is Wrong” (0.98 in 18-49, 2.90 million viewers overall), which stood as cable’s No. 2 show on Tuesday in 18-49.
“If Loving You” exhibited solid retention of its big lead-in, holding more than 80% of “Haves” in 18-49 and women 25-54 and about 90% in women 18-34 (1.24 vs. 1.38). With “The Haves and the Have Nots,” “If Loving You Is Wrong” and a repeat of “Haves” at 8 o’clock, Tuesday was the most-watched night of OWN in its nearly four-year history (2.7 million).
Over at FX, “The Bastard Executioner” (0.39 in 18-49, 1.09 million viewers overall) tumbled more than 50% in 18-49 rating from its week-ago series premiere (0.39 vs. 0.83) while losing nearly half of its total viewership (1.09 million vs. 2.12 million). It may recoup some of the lost viewers in DVR playback, but it’s clear that a good chunk of those who sampled the two-hour-plus pilot opted not to stick with it.