“Hi, kids! . . . What the . . . is this Saturday?” – Krusty the Klown
I’m still going to do Behind Us Forever for this week’s episodes, but the last two days have not been kind in terms of free time. In the interim, how about a little ratings schadenfreude?
Sunday’s episodes both scored dismal ratings, with the first one (“The Saga of Carl”) coming in at just 4.01 million viewers, and “Dangers on a Train” bumping up a bit to 4.52 million. The former is good for #2 on the all time least watched list, with even the higher rated second episode coming in at #10. Here is the current bottom twenty in terms of viewers:
|1||23-21||13-May-12||4.00||Ned ‘N Edna’s Blend|
|2||24-21||19-May-13||4.01||The Saga of Carl|
|3||24-20||12-May-13||4.05||Fabulous Faker Boy|
|4||24-17||14-Apr-13||4.07||What Animated Women Want|
|5||24-12||10-Feb-13||4.19||Love Is a Many-Splintered Thing|
|6||23-13||12-Feb-12||4.33||The Daughter Also Rises|
|7||24-8||16-Dec-12||4.41||To Cur With Love|
|10||24-22||19-May-13||4.52||Dangers on a Train|
|13||23-20||6-May-12||4.75||The Spy Who Learned Me|
|14||23-22||20-May-12||4.79||Lisa Goes Gaga|
|16||23-18||15-Apr-12||4.86||Beware My Cheating Bart|
|17||24-16||17-Mar-13||4.89||Dark Knight Court|
|18||23-16||11-Mar-12||4.96||How I Wet Your Mother|
|19||22-18||10-Apr-11||5.00||The Great Simpsina|
|20||23-19||29-Apr-12||5.00||A Totally Fun Thing That Bart Will Never Do Again|
Of those twenty, nineteen are from Seasons 23 or 24, with the lone exception being from Season 22. Every single episode broadcast since February of this year has made the list. And not a single episode in all of Season 24 was viewed by more than 10 million people, the first time that’s ever happened. (The only one even close came after an NFL playoff game.)
In terms of average viewership, Season 24 ran away with the title of least viewed ever. After bumping along in the low seven million range from Season 20 through 22, last season fell down to just 6.13 million viewers on average. Season 24 sunk even further, averaging just 5.47 million viewers over its twenty-two episodes.
Now, the usual caveat about these ratings: these are just the overnight numbers. When there are significant changes to them (usually because a sporting event runs long), I make those updates, but these are not the fancy pants final numbers that take into account demographics, DVR viewers, and whatever else advertisers complain about. Nielsen only makes very limited data available to the public (at least, as far as I can tell), so these are the numbers I use, but don’t try reading anything into these in terms of “Will the show get cancelled?”.
The thousand monkeys at a thousand Blackberries who run FOX will be looking at those more detailed ratings as well as factoring in all kinds of things like whether or not a replacement would provide the same lead-in numbers for the rest of the Sunday lineup, how expensive said replacement would be, and how much Jean and company react when feces are thrown at them during meetings. (MacFarlane doesn’t even flinch.) Given the production lead time, we should be hearing something about a renewal beyond the current contract (on which there are 29 episodes left) sometime in calendar 2013, but that’s about all that can be said right now.
[Update 6:45pm EDT: Just saw this: CBS Takes Key Ratings Crown for First Time in 21 Years. FOX lost the battle for the nuts and gum people to CBS this year and their overall viewers were third at 7.0 million. No idea what the monkeys will think of losing to the old people network and having Zombie Simpsons dragging down their overall number, but it seemed worth mentioning.]