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ABC’s ‘The Family’ Faces Headwinds From Fox News Debate

ABC’s launch of “The Family” met with ratings resistance Thursday night despite being put in one of the network’s top slots – the hour normally reserved for its big hit “Scandal.”

The Family,” which stars Joan Allen as the matriarch of a clan that welcomes the return of a son long thought vanished, saw its rating in the advertiser-desired 18-49 demo come in below what “Scandal” normally achieves in the hour. And it did so despite not having to face NBC’s popular “The Blacklist” in the timeslot. The Peacock opted to show a repeat of “Blindspot” instead.

“The Family” drew a 1.5 in the demo, and 5.74 million viewers overall, according to Nielsen, compared with a 1.7 demo and 8 million viewers for CBS’ “Mom.” The ABC program did beat CW’s “The 100” and the NBC repeat. CBS’ broadcast of “Two Broke Girls” at 9:30 drew a 1.7 rating in the demo and 6.71 million viewers overall, according to Nielsen.

“The Family” may have been disrupted by Fox News Channel’s broadcast of a Republican presidential debate, which also started at 9 p.m. ET. That broadcast drew 16.9 million viewers, an outsize number for any TV show, and could have siphoned off audience that might normally have sampled the new program.



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