Fall 2010 ratings: 'Dancing with the Stars' kills, but 'Lone Star' is D.O.A.

insider-ratingsImage Credit: Greg Gayne/CBS; Adam Larkey/ABC; Neil Jacobs/CBSIt was a great night for TV fans, but a tough one for broadcasters: Last night’s official start of the 2010-11 season offered a myriad of diverse choices for the discerning viewer, but the heavy competition made it awfully hard for promising newcomers (hi, Lone Star!) to attract even a smidgen of interest.

Let’s start with the night’s big winner. Whether it was Sarah Palin’s “public advocate for teen pregnancy prevention” daughter Bristol or the return of The Hoff to primetime, the premiere of Dancing with the Stars attracted a behemoth audience: The two-hour show lured a whopping 20.99 million eyeballs to ABC and was up 22 percent in the key adults 18-49 demographic versus last fall’s debut. The sparkly lead-in worked wonders for the return of Castle, which averaged 11.16 million viewers and scored a 22 percent improvement in the demo. (Though the competition attributes the drama’s inflated performance to Dancing’s overrun. Sour pusses!) No surprise, then, that ABC won the night among adults 18-49 and in viewers with 17.7 million.

CBS’ lineup of comedies and the debut of the much-anticipated Hawaii Five-0 also posted some impressive numbers. Despite its advanced age, Two and a Half Men held strong against Dancing at 9 p.m. by averaging 14.49 million. It took second place in viewers but won its half hour in the male categories. The debut of Mike & Molly at 9:30 dropped off from Men and averaged 12.24 million, but it still took second place in viewers. And the return of Alex O’Loughlin in Hawaii Five-0 won the 10 p.m. timeslot in viewers (13.43 million), not to mention the key demos like males and women 25-54 (seems that I’m not the only one who likes to ogle the Aussie).

Fox earned bragging rights for having the highest-rated drama of the night among adults 18-49 with the seventh season return of House.  It averaged 10.5 million viewers. Sadly, the hospital show did nothing for the critically-beloved Lone Star, a new drama starring Jon Voight and attractive newcomer James Wolk. The series about a con-man leading a double life only averaged 4.1 million viewers and posted a mere 1.3 rating/3 among adults 18-49.

Over on NBC, the hour-long start of Chuck averaged 6.05 million viewers, but was down 25 percent among adults 18-49 versus the premiere of Heroes last year. The debut of the high-concept drama The Event an hour later, however, posted some much-needed gains in the timeslot: It was up a whopping 68 percent over last fall’s premiere of Trauma among adults 18-49 and lured 11.13 million. The premiere of Chase didn’t fare as well at 10, unfortunately: It was down 53 percent from the premiere of The Jay Leno Show last year in 18-49 and only averaged 7.94 million viewers.

All this heavy competition on the Big Four really didn’t do any favors for the fledgling CW, which only averaged 2.01 million viewers for the entire night. But the network found a few points to brag about: Gossip Girl was up 25 percent versus last week’s premiere in women 18-34 and also attracted a tick more viewers. Congrats?

Comments (113 total) Add your comment
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  • Rion

    Haha, hopefully 90210 is cancelled this year!

    • RockChick

      I hope 90210 is cancelled the re-do or whatever u wanna call it sucks. Not as much as the redo of Melrose Place though lol.

    • Jonathan

      I hope Gossip Girl is cancelled too. I really don’t see the appeal to that show

  • Stormy

    I wasn’t expecting much from Mike & Molly , but was pleasantly surprised.

    • steph

      I know! It was such a cute and funny show! I’m glad it did well.

    • Jonathan

      i agree! I hope more people tune in to watch!
      It’s disappointing hearing about Lone Star. I thought the pilot was really good. I hope ratings improve, I would hate to see it get cancelled.

  • Chris

    Gossip Girl was great last night. Glad to see it’s up in viewers.

  • Diane

    How did How I Met Your Mother do?

    • Kristal

      3.6 demo and 8.78 million viewers.

      • Diane

        Not horrible given how weak last year was.

  • shelbycheri

    I have Lone Star sitting on my DVR. It looks SO intriguing, but I’m wondering if I should even get invested?

    • Chris

      Don’t get invested. Those are very low numbers for FOX. No way they keep it on the air.

    • Matt

      Yeah, it was a really interesting set up – not what I’d ultimately expected at all – but… it’s probably not long for this world.

    • Barry

      This show couldn’t keep me interested and I wanted it to be great cuz the star is fom Michigan.
      Oh well

    • ohoreos

      I recommend it. Watch it. It was a good pilot episode.

    • Dolores Gambini

      Lone Star was great! You definitely should give it a try. Can’t wait until the next episode.

      • Meg

        I thought Lone Star was fantastic. It has a good plot, it is very well acted and stars very good looking actors- what more can you want?
        I hope it does better and stays on- I am very interested to see where they take this show and how long this con can go without being discovered.
        I tried to watch “The Event” and turned it off after 15 minutes. didnt like it, Ive already been Lost before…

      • Chrissy

        I agree! I love Lone Star! The ratings are not good at all though. I don’t understand! I think they should change the night it is on. It is up against DWTS and that is huge. I really think if FOX move Lone Star to another night, the ratings would improve. I love that show!!

    • Hillary

      Don’t bother– I had a chance to watch it last week on a plane to the UK– it was really disappointing.

      • Denise

        I agree I tried to watch the Event and turned after about 15 minutes or so. I’m so glad I did because I turned to Lone Star which was great!! I loved it I hope it doesn’t get cancelled!!

    • Chrissy

      I know!! I dont want to get hooked and it be cancelled! I watched the pilot and loved it !! I hope the ratings improve!

  • Templar

    Had to pass on H50. Couldn’t stand to miss Castle. And it didn’t disappoint. Stana looks even better than last season and the magic is still there between Becket and Castle.

    • AMO

      I watch H50 and DVR’d Castle. Both were great, I’m so psyched about H50-it was exciting and Scott Caan is hilarious. I hope both of those do well. I could care less about DWTS(must be the only one) or Chase.

      • Melanie

        Trust me, you’re not the only one who couldn’t care less about DWTS

      • Hillary

        I did the same– my husband watched H5O with me and remarked that Alex could not act, but he loves Scott Caan from Oceans and Gone in 60 seconds. Favorite for me is Castle and I don’t think Dancing ran over since the start time was 10:01 so ratings should hold.

  • Nerwen Aldarion

    Wow Hawaii did not perform as well as thought, still performed well but no where near the levels people predicted.

    Yeah for Castle!! It did just as well as I thought it would

    • elr

      I think it has pretty good ratings considering the stiff competetion in that time slot, and it did have the highest ratings in the 10 o’clock hour.

  • Derek

    What about How I Met Your Mother? I wondered if being in syndication would boost its viewership

  • Really?

    Okay, this is the second time that I have seen NBC numbers compared to Leno’s premiere. Leno started out as a novelty with Kanye as the opening guest. Try comparing numbers to what Leno was doing even a month into his run. I am not a huge fan of Chase or anything, but it is just annoying when the numbers for that hour are compared to an experiment that has already been kicked to the curb.

    • Sarah

      I agree, to compare a brand new show’s premiere to Leno’s doesn’t make much sense. 7 million is great for NBC at the 10pm slot.

    • forrest

      standard comparison of ‘this time last year’ regardless of what the progam (cancelled or not) might have been. Just a way of showing improvement or loss.

  • tacos

    So glad to see Chuck’s numbers worse than a Heroes episode for a change.

  • milehibat

    If you are not watching Chuck, you are missing an amazing show… Seriously!

    • AMO

      I AGREE! Chuck is way more better than the last couple of seasons of Heroes!

      • D!

        That’s not saying much, ‘cos Heroes was horrible after the first season!

      • Via

        That’s isn’t saying much.

      • Via

        Beat me to the punch and *that* is what I meant.

      • AMO

        in that case, it was way better than the House episode tonight and the Event

    • aj95

      Chuck was fabulous!! Considering it was up against Dancing and it did not receive the promos of The Event or Chase (did anyone else see promos for Chuck?), the numbers were expected. It seems like NBC is just not interested in Chuck – but it gets credit for renewing it.

      • Dave

        I’ve seen a pretty good deal of advertising for Chuck. The fact is, Chuck isn’t going to gain any new viewers at this point. NBC has done it’s job to promote the show (the promotion last year especially was VERY heavy). What more can NBC do? Change the timeslot? Then the fans will complain about that too. They are obviously interested in Chuck’s success. If Chuck fails and gets canceled this year, I don’t think the blame can fall on NBC.

      • Dave 2.0

        There has been more promotion for The Event than there has for Chuck the entire time it has been on the air.

  • Bobbi

    I recorded Lonestar last night too. I’ll watch it and do what I always do. I’ll fall in love with it and then, it will be cancelled. *sigh*

    • Dolores Gambini

      I know what you mean! But Lone Star was great and I am definitely going to watch it again. PLEASE KEEP IT ON!

  • waya

    “House” was absolutely dreadful last night. Worst episode ever! “The Event” was fun though. I miss LOST and “Fringe” is the only unusual-type show on right now, so I’ll stick with “The Event” and see where it goes.

    • Amy

      Agreed! House was so boring last night! I’m hoping the season gets better (I’ve been a fan since the beginning), but I am not excited about this Huddy arc.

      • Diane

        I’ve tuned out because of the Huddy arc

  • Brian

    Chuck had no chance against DWTS in it’s demo. Too bad, hope the show stays, but it’ll be tough to compete against the reason why the world has a right to hate us…. DWTS.

    Mike & Molly was a plesant suprise, best Lolle comment whitescreen at the end of the show EVER.

    • wakeforce

      DWTS is reason the rest of the world hates us? Dancing is an imported show. There are many versions of it around the world, but don’t let facts get in the way of your “oh, ain’t I cool” statement.

  • bamagal432

    I watched “Lone Star” last night and loved it. James Wolk is a very good actor. I watched him in “Front of the Class”, a true story about a man with tourette syndrome and he was awesome so I thought I would watch “Lone Star”. He is equally impressive (besides being hot). It is very much worth watching.

    • Via

      He was good, but I was kind of disracted because he looks like he could be Kyle Chandler’s younger brother – their resemblance is uncanny.

      • Hillary

        exactly what I thought

    • Dolores Gambini

      I agree 110%! Lone Star will be rocking pretty soon!

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