Basic cable shows: What's hot (and what's not)


Image Credit: TNT

We know what you’ve been thinking: Is Extreme Couponing a hit for TLC? Is anyone really watching American Restoration? Lucky for you, we’ve got the results from the second quarter, which will not only allow us to gauge the success of series that aired during the regular TV season (hi, The Killing!), but also take into consideration shows that began in June (welcome back to TV, Falling Skies‘ Noah Wyle). Averages are based on the premiere (or original) episodes only; no reruns go into the making of these stats. Enjoy after the jump (and no goofing on Khloe & Lamar).

Basic Cable’s Top 10 New Primetime Series  (March 28-June 19)
Total Viewers
1. Falling Skies (TNT): 5.9 million
2. Storage Wars (A&E): 3.7 million
3. Franklin & Bash (TNT): 3.1 million
4. Switched at Birth (ABC Family): 3.1 million
5. American Restoration (History): 2.9 million
6. The Killing (AMC): 2.9 million
7. Khloe & Lamar (E! Entertainment): 2.6 million
8. Happily Divorced (TV Land): 2.4 million
9. Extreme Couponing (TLC): 2.2 million
10. Breakout Kings (A&E): 2.2 million

Adults 18-49
1. Falling Skies:  2.6 million
2. Storage Wars:  2.2 million
3. Khloe & Lamar: 1.9 million
4. Switched at Birth: 1.6 million
5. Bethenny Ever After (Bravo): 1.4 million
6. Extreme Couponing: 1.4 million
7. American Restoration (History): 1.4 million
8. Let’s Stay Together (BET): 1.3 million
9. Franklin & Bash: 1.3 million
10. Breakout Kings: 1.2 million

Adults 25-54
1. Falling Skies: 3.2 million
2. Storage Wars: 2.2 million
3. American Restoration: 1.6 million
4. Khloe & Lamar: 1.5 million
5. The Killing (AMC): 1.3 million
6. Franklin & Bash:  1.3 million
7. Extreme Couponing:  1.3 million
8. Bethenny Ever After:  1.3 million
9. Breakout Kings: 1.2 million
10. Let’s Stay Together: 1.172,000

Basic Cable’s Top 10 Returning Original Primetime Series
Total Viewers
1. Pawn Stars (History): 7.1 million
2. American Pickers (History): 5.7 million
3. Swamp People (History): 4.4 million
4. Deadliest Catch (Discovery): 4.4 million
5. In Plain Sight (USA): 4.2 million
6. Law & Order: Criminal Intent (USA): 4.2 million
7. Covert Affairs (USA): 4.2 million
8. Army Wives (Lifetime): 4.1 million
9. Justified (FX): 4.1 million
10. White Collar (USA): 3.8 million

Adults 18-49

1. Pawn Stars: 3.6 million
2. Tosh.0 (Comedy Central): 2.8 million
3. Deadliest Catch: 2.8 million
4. South Park (Comedy Central): 2.6 million
5. American Pickers: 2.5 million
6. Swamp People: 2.3 million
7. Top Chef (Bravo): 2.1 million
8. Real Housewives of New Jersey (Bravo): 2.0 million
9. Justified (FX): 2.0 million
10. American Chopper: Senior vs. Junior  (Discovery): 1.9 million

Adults 25-54

1. Pawn Stars: 3.9 million
2. Deadliest Catch:  3.0 million
3. American Pickers:  2.8 million
4. Swamp People: 2.3 million
5. Top Chef: 2.2 million
6. Justified: 2.1 million
7. Tosh.0:  2.19 million
8. American Chopper: Senior vs. Junior: 2.1 million
9. Real Housewives of New Jersey: 2.1 million
10. Army Wives (Lifetime): 2.0 million 

Comments (63 total) Add your comment
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  • Regina George

    I have never, not once in my life, heard of American Restoration.

    • Sara

      Have you ever watched Pawn Stars? Occasionally, they’ll have someone restore something they bought…and that’s the guy on American Restoration. It’s an alright show.

      • Veronica Mars

        Too many unnecessary categories.
        DO YOUR JOB, WRITER. Summarize that crap.

      • Mike

        And poor Sara thinks that’s probably a slam against her. Way to get your snide comment up top Miss Bell!

      • ccalvin57

        Pawn Stars is all a setup. These guys have all become such stars they cannot work the counter anymore. The show is now Scripted. Some of it really happen earlier, possible with another employee that is not on the show, and some of it is completely made up.

    • MW

      American Restoration is awesome! It’s basically a spin-off of Pawn Stars. I hope someday I can afford Rick to restore my 1950’s Philco fridge.

    • Ames

      I love Swamp People- T-BUDDY!! – best show on the History channel, by a mile!

    • ccalvin57

      There are MANY shows on TV that I have never heard of either, but did not feel the urge to tell everyone. I really don’t care WHAT you heard of and WHAT you didn’t. If you watched it, you are free to respond, if not, shut up.

  • Smallville

    Falling Skies all day errrr day. loL. I really enjoy that show. Dont watch any of the others.

  • Peter

    This is only what’s hot. I was promised what’s not also.

    • Shadowlands

      Anything that’s not on the list (or low on the list) would hypothetically be “not hot”

    • Mr. Holloway

      I’m guessing everything that didn’t make the list is…”not.”

    • Judy

      LOL, good point.

    • Brevity

      It’s not even reporting. It’s cut and paste for clicks.

  • JimmyH

    Falling Skies has become a favorite in our house. We really do not watch any of the “reality” series.

  • darclyte

    I liked Auction Hunters better than Storage Wars, but I’ve only ever seen 2 episodes of each.

    • d

      I agree,Auction Hunters is more about the finds and less about the pickers-as it sould be.

  • Nancy Grace


    • Mad_Andy

      Bwaa Haa Haa Haa. Brilliant!

  • teej

    So glad to see Falling Skies at the top. I needed a Noah Wylie fix and the Librarian movies didn’t cut it. Hey, TNT! Enough with the witches, demons, vampires and ghosts. I want my ER back!

    • James

      I want X-Files back! Late-nite reruns of the X-Files were awesome

    • tomm

      If Clooney’s movies start to bomb, he will be back on ‘ER-The Next Generation’ as the old timer grandaddy figure to the bed hopping 20-somethings.

      • dee

        With the girls or the guys?

  • ST

    Any word on how Teen Wolf is doing? I’m really starting to enjoy that show. I also really like Switched at Birth.

    • Carla Houston

      @ST – I’m also enjoying Teen Wolf. It got off to a slow start for me, but it’s quickly picking up speed.

  • whatevs

    Whoa. Way to go History Channel.

    • Ames


  • Melissa

    Deadliest Catch is the BEST thing on TV right now, reality or scripted, cable or network.

    • JD


    • Jaded

      Dual Survival is super good also!

  • Lucy

    where’s The Walking Dead?

    • Krystal

      I think this is current for this year and walking dead was last year.

  • Jennifer

    Man, I miss the days when A&E meant Arts & Entertainment and the History Channel showed, you know, actual history.

    • boymommy

      Isn’t that the truth. Real trash now!

    • 3reddogs

      Totally agree but in the History Channel’s defense they did give the green light to “How the States Got Their Shapes” after the 2-hour one-shot did so well last year. Check it out! (Tuesdays at 10)

      • econruth

        I like “How the States Got Their Shapes” too. A little geography, a little history, a little civics.. its all good.

      • L

        I love that show. It’s really interesting.

  • econruth

    I love all the USA shows that are on during the summer. Royal Pains, Covert Affairs, White Collar, In Plain Site! I also watch Drop Dead Diva and Falling Skies. ABC, CBS, ect are in reruns or full of “reality” shows that just aren’t grabbing my attention. (Although I will admit to the guilty pleasure that is the Bachlorette, but that’s mostly because of Kristen Shaw’s recaps).

    • Kurt Russell

      Burn Notice and Leverage are better than all of this! In Plain Sight and Covert Affairs are good too.

      • Kurt Russell

        Soon to come Eureka & Warehouse 13 (w/o Joanne Kelly–could be questionable) and maybe Alphas. These three are better than all of those semi-reality Hilbilly shows.

  • Tajah


    That is all.

    • Carla Houston


    • ks


  • sia

    Where’s Burn Notice, Suits, Necessary Roughness and Royal Pains? Basically all the other USA show because those get higher ratings that all the others I believe

    • ace214

      Those shows all debuted after the rating period listed in this article.

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