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[03/22/13 - 08:53 AM]
"Scandal" Returns with Biggest Audience Ever
ABC spins the numbers for Thursday, March 21.

[via press release from ABC]

Wife Swap Opens Strong/Grey's is Thursday's #1 Show/Scandal Returns with Biggest Audience Ever

With the season opener of Wife Swap, Grey's and the return of Scandal (first original since 2/21), ABC ranked #1 on Thursday in Adults 18-49 (tying Fox with American Idol and Glee). Among Adults 18-49, ABC tied its top-rated Thursday with series programming in nearly 6 months - since 10/4/12.

Up sharply over its last season premiere (on 4/2/10) in Total Viewers (+43%) and Adults 18-49 (+42%), ABC's Wife Swap opener topped all of the telecasts in its previous season to earn its best numbers since April 2009 - since 4/17/09. Wife Swap delivered ABC's highest rating in the time period with series programming in 5 months - since 10/18/12. From start to finish the ABC unscripted show gained 8% in viewers and 20% in young adults, despite facing Idol in the hour.

Shooting up from its lead-in at 9pm (+71%), ABC's Grey's Anatomy emerged as Thursday's #1 TV show in Adults 18-49, topping Idol on the night for the first time ever. Grey's won the 9 o'clock hour in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49. Gaining week to week in viewers (+11%) and young adults (+12%), Grey's delivered its most-watched telecast in 10 weeks - since 1/10/13.

On its return, ABC's Scandal won the 10 o'clock hour in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49. In fact Scandal has been the #1 show in the hour in Adults 18-49 on 7 of its last 8 original telecasts. Scandal ranked as the #1 broadcast program in prime time with 191k tweets, topping American Idol by 68% (113k). Delivering its best-ever retention of Grey's in Total Viewers (95%), Scandal marked the series most-watched telecast ever.

Quick Take for Thursday, March 21, 2013 (Fast Affiliate Live + Same Day Ratings)

ABC is No. 1 on Thursday in Adults 18-49 with its Best Number Since October

Up from its Last Premiere and Topping All of its Previous Season's Telecasts, "Wife Swap" Opens with ABC's Best Series Adult 18-49 Rating in the Hour in 5 Months

Beating "Idol" for the First Time Ever on the Night, "Grey's Anatomy" is Up 12% in Adults 18-49 to Rank as Thursday's No. 1 TV Show with its Top Audience in 10 Weeks

On its First Original in 1 Month, "Scandal" Returns with its Biggest Audience Ever

ABC's "Scandal" is Thursday's Most-Social Broadcast Series, Beating "Idol" by 68%

Thursday Night (8:00-11:00 p.m.)

With the season opener of "Wife Swap," "Grey's" and the return of "Scandal" (first original since 2/21), ABC ranked No. 1 on Thursday in Adults 18-49 (2.4/7 - tying Fox with "American Idol" and "Glee").

· Among Adults 18-49, ABC tied its top-rated Thursday with series programming since October 4, 2012.

"Wife Swap" (8:00-9:00 p.m.)

Up sharply over its last season premiere (on 4/2/10) in Total Viewers (+43% - 5.0 million vs. 3.5 million) and Adults 18-49 (+42% - 1.7/5 vs. 1.2/5), ABC's "Wife Swap" opener topped all of the telecasts in its previous season to earn its best numbers since April 2009 - since 4/17/09. From start to finish the ABC unscripted show gained 8% in viewers and 20% in young adults, despite facing "Idol" in the hour.

· "Wife Swap" delivered ABC's highest Adult 18-49 rating in the time period with series programming in 5 months - since 10/18/12.

"Grey's Anatomy" (9:00-10:00 p.m.)

Shooting up from its lead-in at 9:00 p.m. (+71%), ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" emerged as Thursday's No. 1 TV show in Adults 18-49, topping "Idol" on the night for the first time ever (2.9/8 vs. 2.8/9). "Grey's" won the 9 o'clock hour in Total Viewers (9.1 million) and Adults 18-49 (2.9/8).

· Gaining week to week in viewers (+11%) and young adults (+12%), "Grey's" delivered its most-watched telecast in 10 weeks - since 1/10/13.

"Scandal" (10:00-11:00 p.m.)

On its return, ABC's "Scandal" won the 10 o'clock hour in Total Viewers (8.6 million) and Adults 18-49 (2.7/8). In fact "Scandal" has been the No. 1 show in the hour in Adults 18-49 on 7 of its last 8 original telecasts. In addition, "Scandal" nearly tied "Idol" on the night in Adults 18-49 and beat the Fox show with Adults 18-34.

· "Scandal" ranked as the No. 1 broadcast program in primetime with 191k tweets, topping "American Idol" by 68% (113k).

· Delivering its best-ever retention of "Grey's" in Total Viewers (95%), "Scandal" marked the series most-watched telecast ever (8.6 million).

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 47% currently, from 43% at the same point in 2012.

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: The Nielsen Company, Fast Affiliate Live + Same Day, 03/21/13.





  [march 2013]  
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· AMERICAN IDOL (FOX)
· GLEE (FOX)
· GREY'S ANATOMY (ABC)
· SCANDAL (ABC)
· WIFE SWAP (ABC)









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