“Empire” may be crumbling a bit, but Fox’s one-time-only tactic of moving it back an hour to serve as a platform from which to launch “Star” not only gave the new show a good debut on Wednesday night, but lifted “Empire” a bit itself.
“Star,” the newest Lee Daniels music drama for Fox, pulled in a highly respectable 2.2 rating in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic and 6.73 million total viewers. Considering most of Fox’s other dramas outside of “Empire” have been pulling in demo ratings in the low 1.0 range (or lower), and that it’s tied with “Designated Survivor” as the second-best drama debut this season, one might be tempted to use “stellar” as a descriptor for these numbers.
“Empire” came in at a 2.7 in the demo and 7.57 million viewers, up from a low couple weeks for its fall finale.
CBS capped off its “Millennials vs. Gen X” season of “Survivor” with a similarly respectable 2.0 in the demo and 9.14 million viewers, though that was off a touch from the last couple season-enders. The usual “Survivor” reunion episode that aired right after brought in 6.68 million viewers and a 1.4 rating in the demo, winning the 10 p.m. battle with the other show on air using “survivor” in its title: ABC’s “Designated Survivor.”
Prior to “Designated Survivor,” which drew a (slightly up) 1.2 and 6.17 million viewers, ABC’s comedy block grew back from some of its lows the week before. “The Goldbergs” came in with a 1.7 and 6.13 million viewers. “Speechless” pulled in a 1.6 and 5.41 million. “Modern Family” returned from a brief hiatus with a 2.0 and 6.83 million viewers. “Black-ish” grew to a 1.6 and 5.51 million.
NBC devoted its evening to a couple Christmas-themed programs: The aptly named “Pentatonix Christmas Special” (1.4 in the demo, 7.49 million viewers) and the “Saturday Night Live Christmas Special” (1.5 in the demo, 5.75 million viewers).
The CW also went with a holiday theme for the night, with “The Top 12 Greatest Christmas Movies of All Time” (0.3 in the demo, 1.27 million viewers) and a synergistic rerun of “The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show” (0.3 in the demo, 1.03 million viewers).
As a reminder, many of these series will see lifts of 50% or more once viewing within three and seven days is tallied. However, most of those gains won’t translate to the ratings guarantees networks make advertisers.