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Stellar Return for Fox’s ‘Empire’

The Three Month Absence was Not Detrimental to the Household Overnights


Household Rating/Share
Fox: 6.1 rating/10 share, CBS: 5.2/ 9, NBC: 4.1/ 7, ABC: 3.0/ 5, CW: 1.3/ 2

Percent Change from the Year-Ago Evening:

CBS: +18, Fox: + 2, NBC: – 9, CW: -19, ABC: -35


Ratings Breakdown:
Absence did not have a negative impact on Fox’s “Empire,” which returned from its three-month hiatus with a stellar 8.3 rating/13 share in the household overnights from 9-10 p.m. Comparably, that was five percent above the 7.9/12 for its winter season finale (on Dec. 2, 2015), and that translated into 11.81 million viewers and a 4.5 rating in adults 18-49, based on the Live + Same Day data.

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“Empire” lead-in “Rosewood” benefited by the pre tune-in factor, with a second-place 4.1/ 7 from 8-9 p.m. Comparably, that was 52 percent above the 2.7/ 5 one week earlier, and overnight growth in the second half-hour was eight percent (3.9/ 6 to 4.2/ 7).

In the recently introduced series department, NBC medical drama “Heartbeat” slipped by just one-tenth of a rating point from its time period premiere last week at a 3.3/ 5 in the household overnights from 8-9 p.m. But a 3.4 in the overnights last week translated into only 5.16 million viewers and a 0.9 rating/3 share in adults 18-49, based on the Live + Same Day data. Former time period occupant “The Mysteries of Laura” is a stronger option.

“Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders” on CBS, meanwhile, dropped to a 4.5/ 8 at 10 p.m., which was a 12 percent decrease from the 5.1/ 9 last week. And that 5.1 overnight household rating translated into 7.75 million viewers and a 1.5/ 5 in adults 18-49, based on the Live + Same Day data.

Comparably, retention for “Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders” out of parent “Criminal Minds” (#2: 5.6/ 9 from 9-10 p.m.) was respectable at 80 percent and it trailed competing “Chicago PD” on NBC (#1: 4.7/ 8) by only four percent. ABC’s “Nashville” finished a distant third at 10 p.m. with a 2.8/ 5.

Earlier in the evening on CBS was the always reliable “Survivor” at a dominant 5.7/ 9 from 8-9 p.m., which was equal to one week earlier. And veteran “Law & Order: SVU” on NBC scored a 4.3/ 7 at 9 p.m., which built from aforementioned lead-in “Heartbeat” by 30 percent.

Elsewhere, ABC aired repeats of sitcoms “The Middle” (#3: 3.7/ 6), “The Goldbergs” (#4: 3.1/ 5), “Modern Family” (#4: 3.3/ 5) and “black-ish” (#4: 2.5/ 4) from 8-10 p.m. And The CW featured a typical 1.6/ 3 from “Arrow” at 8 p.m. (#5) into a 1.0/2 for “Supernautral” (#5) at 9 p.m., which will be heading into season 12 in 2016-17.

Source: Nielsen Media Research

Written by Marc Berman

Marc Berman

Marc Berman has been writing professionally since 1999 and is the author of the “Mr. Television” for Campaign US ( Most recently, Berman was the creator and Editor-in-Chief of website and newsletter TV Media Insights for Cross MediaWorks. From 1999-2011, he was the Senior Editor for Mediaweek and has also written for The New York Daily News, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter and Emmy Magazine, among others. Berman has also appeared on “Entertainment Tonight,” “Extra,” “Access Hollywood,” “Inside Edition,” “The CBS Evening News,” E!, CNN, CNBC, Fox News and MSNBC.

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  1. Empire proved to be the exception to the rule with regards to a drama returning after a hiatus.

  2. I was going to ask how the heck Debbie can be part of the “Brains” tribe? Then it hit me. “Brawns” was the only other choice.

  3. I’ve watched every episode of “Empire” since the very first one. I loved the series but last night I felt let down. Something seemed to be missing. Maybe it’s just me after the three month hiatus. I do plan to stick with “Empire”.