Thursday, October 08, 2009
ABC Television Network
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Quick Take for Wednesday, October 7, 2009
(Fast Affiliate Live + Same Ratings)

Improving the Time Period Year to Year in Viewers and Young Adults,
ABC's Freshman Comedy Block Finishes No. 1 from 8-10pm in Adults 18-34

At 8pm, ABC's Freshman "Hank" Draws More Viewers than Fox's "Dance"

Jumping from its Adult 18-49 Lead-in at 8:30pm, "The Middle" Outdraws
Fox's "Dance" in Viewers and Beats its Comedy Competition in Adults 18-34

 Finishing as the No. 2 TV Show of the Night in Adults 18-49 to CBS' Veteran
"Criminal Minds," ABC's "Modern Family" Hits a Series High with Men 18-34

Continuing to Deliver Strong Lead-in Retention, "Cougar Town"
Improves its Slot Year to Year for ABC by 15% in Adults 18-49

"Eastwick" Beats "Leno" at 10pm for the 3rd Straight Week in Adults 18-49
And Places No. 1 with Women 18-34 for its 2nd Consecutive Telecast

Wednesday Night Freshman Comedy Block (8:00-10:00 p.m.)
ABC's all-freshman 8:00-10:00 p.m. comedy block continued to deliver impressive compatibility, growing by over 1 million viewers (6.7 million to 7.8 million) and by 94% in Adults 18-49 from start to finish (1.6/5 to 3.1/8) against strong established competition on the other nets.  

* Up for the 2nd week in a row, ABC's Wednesday comedy block improved the time period year to year by 14% in Total Viewers  (7.4 million vs. 6.5 million) and by 9% in Adults 18-49 (2.5/7 vs. 2.3/7) over the Net's performance in the 2-hour time period on the same night last year.
* ABC's comedy block finished No. 2 in the time period among Adults 18-34 (2.0/6) to Fox ("Dance"/"Glee"), leading NBC by 11% ("Mercy"/"L&O: SVU" = 1.8/6) and CBS by 25% ("Old Christine"/"Gary Unmarried"/"Criminal Minds" = 1.6/5)   
"Hank" (8:00-8:30 p.m.)
At 8:00 p.m., ABC's freshman comedy "Hank" outdrew Fox's time-period regular "So You Think You Can Dance" by 14% in Total Viewers (6.7 million vs. 5.9 million).  "Hank" took second place in the half-hour with Men 25-54 (1.9/5).

"The Middle" (8:30-9:30 p.m.)
Jumping from its Adult 18-49 lead-in by 31% (2.1/6 vs. 1.6/5) at 8:30 p.m., ABC's "The Middle" drew a larger overall audience than Fox's "Dance" (6.8 million vs. 6.4 million), beat its comedy competition in the half-hour (CBS' "Gary Unmarried") by 8% among Adults 18-34 (1.4/6 vs. 1.3/4) and finished in a near-tie among Adult 18-49 (2.1/6 vs. 2.2/6).   "The Middle" retained a solid 81% of its week-earlier series debut in Adults 18-49.

"Modern Family" (9:00-9:30 p.m.)
Building on its lead-in at 9:00 p.m. by 1.7 million viewers (8.5 million vs. 6.8 million) and by 52% in Adults 18-49 (3.2/9 vs. 2.1/6), ABC's "Modern Family" placed No. 2 in its half-hour to CBS' veteran "Criminal Minds" on both counts.  Hitting a series-high in Men 18-34 (2.6/8 - despite competing against MLB Playoff Baseball on cable), "Modern Family" earned the No. 1 position in its half-hour against its broadcast competitors, beating Fox's "Glee" by 18% (2.2/7), NBC's "Law & Order: SVU" by 44% (1.8/6) and CBS' "Criminal Minds" by 63% (1.6/5).  

* The new ABC comedy qualified as the No. 2 TV show on Wednesday in Adults 18-49, trailing only "Criminal Minds."   

"Cougar Town" (9:30-10:00 p.m.)
At 9:30 p.m., ABC's "Cougar Town" retained 97% of its Adult 18-49 lead-in, 100% in both Adults 25-54 and Women 18-49, and built on "Modern Family" with Women 25-54.   ABC's "Cougar Town" beat out its broadcast competitors in the time period among Men 18-34 (2.1/6) for the 2nd time in 3 telecasts.  

* Versus the year-ago night, "Cougar Town" boosted its half-hour for ABC by 15% over an original Private Practice" (3.1/8 vs. 2.7/7).  

"Eastwick" (10:00-11:00 p.m.)
Opposite CBS' time-period veteran "CSI: NY," ABC's freshman "Eastwick" earned second place in the 10 o'clock hour, defeating NBC's "Jay Leno" for the 3rd week in a row among Adults 18-49 (1.8/5 vs. 1.7/5).  

* "Eastwick" placed No. 1 in its hour with Women 18-34 (2.0/6-tie) for its 2nd consecutive telecast.

A note about increasing DVR penetration and year-to-year rating comparisons: Year-to-year rating comparisons based on the Live + Same Day data stream are distorted by the level of DVR penetration in the Nielsen sample, which has jumped up to 33% currently, from 27% at the same point in 2008. More viewers are watching shows on their own timetables, which may not be reflected in the overnight next day numbers. The only truly valid year-to-year comparison would be one based on the Live + 7 Day metric, once those stats are released by Nielsen.

Source: Nielsen Media Research (Fast Affiliate, Live + Same Day Ratings), 10/7/09.

ABC Media Relations Contact:
Jeff Lindsey (818) 460-5095 / Pons Rongavilla (818) 460-5615 / Susan Sewell (212) 456-1508