Diagnosis for ‘Scrubs’: Very promising
Best-ever Tuesday rating for the NBC sitcom
January 4, 2006
NBC sidelined veteran comedy Scrubs at the start of the season because its ratings had been dipping over the last two years. It seems the break did the show a lot of good.
Scrubs’ fifth-season premiere on Tuesday night at 9 p.m. posted a 3.8 overnight rating among viewers 18-49, the highest rating the show has received over 20 episodes in that timeslot. It was also 15 percent better than the 3.3 overnight rating for season four’s premiere in August 2004.
Further, a second episode of the show at 9:30 p.m. averaged a 4.1 among 18-49s, the show’s highest rating since September 2004. The 3.9 rating Scrubs averaged during the hour was a 26 percent increase over the 3.1 rating the show averaged during its fourth season.
Scrubs received a lot of publicity over its return, and that could explain some of the bump. Also, it was competing against mostly repeats except for the Orange Bowl on ABC.
But another reason Scrubs did so well Tuesday night could be that many viewers were tuning in at 9 p.m. expecting to see NBC’s new hit comedy My Name is Earl, not aware that the show has now moved to Thursdays, beginning tonight.
Still, NBC has to be happy with “Scrubs'” solid numbers. The real test will come next week when the network will learn how many of those viewers return.
Meanwhile, led by an exciting Orange Bowl game between Penn State and Florida State, ABC finished first Tuesday night among 18-49s with a 6.2 average overnight rating and a 15 share. NBC was second at 4.2/10, CBS third at 3.1/8, Fox fourth at 2.9/7, Univision fifth at 1.6/4, and the WB and UPN tied for sixth at 1.2/3.
At 8 p.m. ABC led with a 5.7 average for the first hour of the Orange Bowl. NBC was second with a 3.2 average for Fear Factor, followed by CBS’s 3.1 average for a repeat of NCIS. A rerun of Fox’s Bones finished fourth that hour with a 2.5 average, with the WB fifth with a 1.5 for a Gilmore Girls repeat, Univision sixth with a 1.7 for Contra Viento y Marea and UPN seventh with a 1.1 for the first hour of the movie Devil’s Pond.
ABC led again during the 8 p.m. hour, averaging a 7.1 among 18-49s for the second hour of the Orange Bowl. NBC moved to second that hour with its 3.9 average for Scrubs, with CBS third with a 3.5 for another NCIS repeat and Fox fourth with a 3.2 for a repeat of House.
Univision was fifth that hour with a 1.8 for Alborada, UPN sixth with a 1.3 for the conclusion of its movie, and the WB seventh with a 1.0 for a repeat of Beauty and the Geek.
At 10 p.m. ABC clung to its lead with a 5.9 average for the third hour of the everlasting Orange Bowl, which didn’t wrap up until 1 a.m. NBC remained second with a 5.5 average for Law & Order: SVU, with CBS third with a 2.8 for 48 Hours Mystery and Univision fourth with a 1.3 for Casos de la Vida Real.
Among households, ABC led the night with a 12.1 average rating and an 18 share, well ahead of second-place CBS’s 7.5/11. NBC finished third at 6.6/10, Fox fourth at 4.9/7, UPN fifth at 2.2/3, and Univision and the WB tied for sixth at 2.1/3.
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