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Thursday Overnights: CBS Wins; ‘Will & Grace’ Remains a Keeper on NBC

Fox's 'The Orville' Likely to Picked-Up for a Full Season


Household Rating/Share
CBS: 6.1/10, ABC: 4.1/ 7, NBC: 3.7/ 6, Fox: 2.5/ 4, CW: 1.1/ 2

Percent Change from Opening Thursday in 2016 – 9/21/16:
CBS: +11, Fox: + 9. ABC: + 5, NBC: + 3, CW: -15

-Ratings Breakdown:
The final “Thursday Night Football” match-up on CBS, Miami vs. Baltimore, kept the Eye net in the overnight winner’s circle. The Ravens’ 40 to 0 victory was below average, however, at an estimated 6.5 rating/11 share in the household overnights in primetime. Next week on CBS will be “The Big Bang Theory” at 8 p.m. into episode two of prequel “Young Sheldon” at 8:30 p.m., the season premieres of “Mom” and “Life in Pieces” from 9-10 p.m., and the series premiere of “S.W.A.T.” at 10 p.m.

On NBC, the return of “Will & Grace” remained a much needed success at a second-place 5.1/ 8 in the 9 p.m. half-hour. Comparably, that built from lead-in “The Good Place” (#3: 2.9/ 5 at 8:30 p.m.) by 76 percent. It was 13 percent above year-ago time period occupant “Chicago Med” (4.5/ 7 on 10/27/16). And it means more series are likely to be revived because of “Will & Grace.” For more on “Will & Grace,” click here

Earlier in the evening on NBC was underrated “Superstore” at a third-place 3.1/ 5 at 8 p.m. Sophomore “Great News,” unfortunately, continues to squander the lead-in support from “Will & Grace,” dropping by 45 percent with a fourth-place 2.8/ 5 at 9:30 p.m. And that led to a 4.2/ 7 (#2) for “Chicago Fire” at 10 p.m., which was 17 percent above “The Blacklist” on the year-ago evening (3.6/ 7 on 10/27/16).

Elsewhere, ABC scored a typical Thursday with its combination of “Grey’s Anatomy” (#1t: 5.6/ 9), the final season of “Scandal” (#3: 2.9/ 5) and “How To Get Away With Murder” (#3: 2.9/ 5). Fox newbie “The Orville” (#4: 2.9/ 5 at 9 p.m.) increased by 32 percent from lead-in “Gotham” (#4: 2.2/ 4 at 8 p.m.), which means a full season episode order is likely on its way. And The CW featured veteran “Supernatural” (#5: 1.2/ 2 at 8 p.m.) into relocated “Arrow” (#5: 1.0/ 2), which has lost steam since moving into the Thursday 9 p.m. ET hour.

What follows is the breakdown by half-hour for Thursday, October 26:

8:00 p.m.
ABC – “Grey’s Anatomy”: 5.8/10 (#1)
CBS – NFL Football Kickoff: 3.8/ 7 (#3)
NBC – “Superstore”: 3.1/ 5 (#3)
Fox – “Gotham”: 2.2/ 4 (#4)
CW – “Supernatural”: 1.2/ 2 (#5)

8:30 p.m.
ABC – “Grey’s Anatomy”: 5.4/ 9 (#2)
CBS – Thursday Football (Miami Dophins vs. Baltimore Ravens): 6.2/11 (#1)
NBC – “The Good Place”: 2.9/ 5 (#3)
Fox – “Gotham”: 2.1/ 3 (#4)
CW – “Supernatural”: 1.2/ 2 (#5)

9:00 p.m.
ABC – “Scandal”: 4.0/ 6 (#3)
CBS – Thursday Football (Miami Dophins vs. Baltimore Ravens): 6.7/11 (#1)
NBC – “Will & Grace”: 5.1/ 8 (#2)
Fox – “The Orville”: 2.8/ 5 (#4)
CW – “Arrow”: 1.0/ 2 (#5)

9:30 p.m.
ABC – “Scandal”: 3.8/ 6 (#3)
CBS – Thursday Football (Miami Dophins vs. Baltimore Ravens): 7.3/12 (#1)
NBC – “Great News”: 2.8/ 5 (#4)
Fox – “The Orville”: 2.9/ 5 (#3)
CW – “Arrow”: 0.9/ 1 (#5)

10:00 p.m.
ABC – “How to Get Away With Murder”: 3.0/ 5 (#3)
CBS – Thursday Football (Miami Dophins vs. Baltimore Ravens): 6.1/10 (#1)
NBC – “Chicago Fire”: 4.2/ 7 (#2)

10:30 p.m.
ABC – “How to Get Away With Murder”: 2.8/ 5 (#3)
CBS – Thursday Football (Miami Dophins vs. Baltimore Ravens): 6.1/11 (#1)
NBC – “Chicago Fire”: 4.2/ 8 (#2)

Source: Nielsen Media Research


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  1. NBC could get even higher ratings if they did not surround W&G with such low-rated shows. And it is hurting the Chicago show, as well.

    • Definitely agree on that one NBC can do way better than this even with W&G if it had more better rated comedies around it as Great News is dropping Chicago Fire this fall. Hopefully next week is Great News’ last week on the air and they comeback in January with Marlon ready to go.

      One thing NBC can do right away is not only develop more multi-cams around W&G but revive another strong comedy from the past where they can get some of the original cast to commit to it that way they can have an anchor leading off at 8pm which would probably put NBC in a position to control Thursdays for a few years.

  2. Good sign for NBC that Will & Grace has officially stabilized and went up from a 5.0 last week to a 5.1 hopefully it’s up from a 1.7 to 1.8 or at the very least holds at the 1.7 but I agree with Louis though if it wasn’t surrounded around losers it could get even bigger numbers. Same thing for Chicago Fire that Great News rating is pulling it down.

    I agree with Marc too, W&G’s success means more comedy revivals are coming and Roseanne will explode it so if you hate reboots or revivals your worst nightmare is going to come true because a bunch of them are likely going to get revived now. LOL!

    • I am more nervous about Roseanne than I was W&G. I am worried that the new Roseanne will be similar to the last couple of years that it was on the air rather than the early days of it.

      • I was cautious at first until I heard Whitney Cummings and Wanda Sykes got attached to it those are some funny ladies who do comedy very well and I think Wanda already ruled out anything that happened at the end being carried over into the new series. I think this will be pretty good but I still have my doubts unlike W&G.

    • Very sad news indeed that the “success” of Will and Grace (sorry Larry but 6 million viewers… that’s no success) would bring in more continuations, remake etc…

      TV desperately needs something, anything a little fresh and not more retreads.

      It is indeed a nightmare as it will continue to slaughter what’s left of the ratings and viewer interest.

        • And you’d be wrong. I say that of every show that only has 6 million viewers on a major network…

          You might be the one who sees politics in it…

          And in case you were wondering I probably watched every original W&G six times at least (most recently on Logo)… 😛

  3. Will & Grace has been a Keeper for the last 4 weeks now! (for your headline…)

    OK Marc we get it! 😉 And I agree, it’s doing well for NBC (but not really lifting the networks’s overall night that far above what it was doing a year ago…)

    How about one of these weeks including a headline that Grey’s Anatomy is still one of the top dramas on air right now (… and after 14 seasons!) No revivals needed there…

  4. If beating Gotham is the new “standard”, you all see why I say that renewing shows has exactly nothing to do with ratings…

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