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Welcome to The Futon's Ratings Survival Guide, our annual feature which takes each new fall series on the broadcast networks and tells you the numbers it will need to survive for a second season. In general, a show's success isn't so much where it lands on the weekly ratings chart but rather how it performs in two key categories:
1. How much of its lead-in audience it retains. If a show averages 10 million viewers that's a good thing. But if the show that airs before it is averaging 30 million viewers, that's not a good thing. Why? Because 20 of those 30 million viewers decided to turn off that particular channel when the next show came on.
2. How it performs year-to-year in its time period. A new show is usually in its time period because the network thinks it can do better than it did in that slot last year. In other words, do worse than the show that was canceled after three weeks last fall then you too probably are not long for this world.
As you'll see, together these measurements paint a clear picture on how a particular show is doing. So without further ado, let's begin.
A GIFTED MAN (CBS)
(Fridays at 8:00/7:00c)
CBS hasn't quite recovered from the departure of "Ghost Whisperer" on Friday nights: replacements in the 8:00/7:00c hour like "The Defenders" and "Chaos" haven't managed to spark much of an audience while the de facto final season of "Medium" saw its numbers plummet in the earlier slot. That leaves "A Gifted Man" with the valiant task of capturing viewers on a night where a 1.8 adults 18-49 rating is the best the Eye has done on Fridays in two years.
Here's how CBS has fared on Friday nights the past two seasons:*
|fridays in 2009-2011||time||viewers|
|Ghost Whisperer: Season 5||8:00 PM||7.77|
|Medium: Season 6||9:00 PM||7.76|
|NUMB3RS: Season 6||10:00 PM||8.21|
|CSI: NY - Season 7||9:00 PM||10.02|
|Blue Bloods: Season 1||10:00 PM||11.01|
|Medium: Season 7||8:00 PM||6.69|
|The Defenders||8:00 PM||8.57|
|Miami Medical||10:00 PM||6.45|
|Flashpoint: Season 3||9:00 PM||6.24|
|Flashpoint: Season 3||10:00 PM||6.09|
|Flashpoint: Season 4||8:00 PM||6.53|
* Viewers are in millions, adults 18-49 is the percentage of said viewers in the demographic; all are based on fast national data, using only first-run episodes in its regular time period.
COMING SUNDAY: ABC's "Pan Am."