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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.
NEW GIRL (FOX)
(Tuesdays at 9:00/8:00c)
With FOX showing faith in "Raising Hope" despite a weak 59% retention rate of its "Glee" lead-in, "New Girl" will undoubtedly get a lot of leeway during its freshman run. Assuming neither "Glee" nor "Raising Hope" crater this fall, "New Girl" will be billed as a runaway success by the network if it falls anywhere between said numbers.
Here's how FOX has fared on Tuesday nights the past two seasons:*
|tuesdays in 2009-2011||time||viewers|
|American Idol: Season 9||8:00 PM||22.18|
|Glee: Season 1||9:00 PM||11.81|
|Glee: Season 2||8:00 PM||10.72|
|Raising Hope: Season 1||9:00 PM||6.38|
|Running Wilde||9:30 PM||3.96|
|Traffic Light||9:30 PM||3.29|
* 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 TOMORROW: FOX's "The X Factor" & ABC's "Revenge" & "Suburgatory."