ON THIS DAY PBS stations across the country broadcast television’s first live open-heart surgery during a special entitled “The Operation” in 1983…Valene Ewing (Joan Van Ark) discovered she was having twins on “Knots Landing” on CBS in 1984… In 1996, HBO debuted movie “The Late Shift,” which chronicled the competition between David Letterman (John Michael Higgins) and Jay Leno (Daniel Roebuck) for the retiring Johnny Carson’s “Tonight Show” seat… Celebrity Birthdays: “Shark Tank’s” Daymond John is 48; actress Niecy Nash (“Scream Queens”) is 47; “Masters of None” star Aziz Ansari is 34; actress Emily Blunt (“The Devil Wears Prada”) is also 34; actress Dakota Fanning (“The War of the Worlds”) is 23.
Did You Know?:
Valene, of course, decided to name her twins Betsy and Bobby on “Knots Landing.” The name Bobby was chosen for their “late” Uncle Bobby Ewing. But when Patrick Duffy popped up in the shower still alive on “Dallas” the following season, he was never mentioned again on “Knots Landing.”
Percent Change from the Year-Ago Evening:
ABC: -17, NBC: -20, Fox: -24, CBS: -30, CW: -40
NBC moved into the top spot in the household overnights on this particularly lackluster Wednesday where only four-tenths of a rating point separated the Big 4 networks.
In alarming news for CBS, week two of legal drama “Doubt,” starring Katherine Heigl, dropped by 22 percent from its already modest opening last week with a 2.8 rating/5 share in households (#2) at 10 p.m. One week earlier, the opening household overnight was a 3.6/ 7, and that translated into just 5.31 million viewers and a 0.8 rating/1 share in adults 18-49, based on the Live + Same Day data. “Doubt” also dipped by 39 percent in the overnights from its “Criminal Minds” lead-in (#1: 4.6/ 8 from 9-10 p.m.), and is expected to come in at about a 0.6 rating in the key demographic. With that in mind don’t be surprised to see CBS potentially make a quick time period change.
For the full analysis and individual program breakdown for Wednesday, Feb. 22, click here
Live + Same Day Data -Saturday 2/18/17: Click here
-Sunday 2/19/17: Click here -Monday 2/20/17: Click here
Weekly Ratings Scorecard
What follows are the Live + Same Day rating results for the week of Feb. 13. Keep in mind that annual “The Grammy Awards” aired on CBS on the Monday in the year ago week (hence the steep year-to-year erosion).
SERIES RENEWALS AND CANCELLATIONS Fox Renews “Lethal Weapon” and “Star” for Season Two
Following “The Mick” pick-up earlier this week, Fox has announced the renewals of Wednesday night dramas “Lethal Weapon” and “Star” for a second season Fox is reporting a total multi-platform average audience of 11 million viewers, season to-date, for “Lethal Weapon,” which ranks among the Top 5 new series this season, and 7.5 million for “Star.” The total number of new episodes ordered for both series in 2017-18 has not been confirmed.
Both series conclude their first seasons on March 15.
Top TV Shows on Social based on Total Actions in January 2017: The Social Importance of “Pretty Little Liars”
From Shareablee: “SportsCenter” on ESPN topped the month of January 2017 among all TV shows, with over 87M Total Actions across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. Comparably, that was more than triple the No. 2 occupant on cable, Freeform’s “Pretty Little Liars,” which at just over 25M total actions is particularly impressive because this social pioneer does not return for its final 10 episodes until April 18th. The most recent installment in the current seventh season aired on August 30, 2016.
With the two-hour series finale of “Pretty Little Liars” slated for June 20th, much of the social activity at present is centered on the early farewell posts, speculation about the unsolved mysteries (using hashtags #PLLMemoryLane, #PLLTheory and #PLLEndgame), and the YouTube trailer for the remaining episodes of this final season.
Following in the paths of dramas “St. Elsewhere” and “thirtysomething” before it, which began in the 1980s and demonstrated the value of the young adult demographics; or Netflix entries like “Orange is the New Black,” which exhibit the growing relevance of the digital streamers, “Pretty Little Liars” is the poster child for social media. As seen by this intriguing mystery drama, success by the traditional Nielsen ratings is no longer the sole measure the success for any television series. Social also matters. For more, click here
NEW PROGRAMMING ANNOUNCEMENTS
USA Eyes “Suits” Spin-Off with Gina Torres
USA is in early talks for a potential new series headlined by former “Suits” star Gina Torres. The proposed series would feature Torres, who exited “Suits” midway through season six when her character moved to Chicago to start a new life with her ex Jeff Malone (D.B. Woodside), reprising her role as Jessica Pearson. Shortly after leaving “Suits,” Torres joined the cast of new ABC drama “The Catch” in a one season deal.
There are no details at present on the proposed “Suits” spin-off, or confirmation from USA that it is moving forward.
NOTES OF INTEREST
Hulu Acquires Starz’s “Black Sails”
Hulu has acquired subscription the streaming rights to seasons one through three of Starz drama “Black Sails,” as well as the fourth and final season when it becomes available. Debuting on January 25, 2014, “Back Sails,” created by Jonathan E. Steinberg, is the prequel to Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel “Treasure Island.” It takes place 20 years prior to “Treasure Island,” and follows the most feared pirate of the day, Captain Flint (Toby Stephens). The first three seasons averaged 3.6 million multiplatform viewers per episode, according to Starz.
“Black Sails” concludes on April 2, 2017, with 38 episodes in total produced.
Blockbusters, Actors and Outrage: Why the Oscars are Poised for a Big Night. Click here
IFC to Telecast the Film Independent Spirit Awards Through 2020
IFC and Film Independent have renewed their exclusive agreement for IFC to telecast the annual Film Independent Spirit Awards in the U.S. through 2020. This year’s event, co-hosted by Nick Kroll (“The Kroll Show”) and John Mulaney (“Saturday Night Live”) airs live on IFC on Saturday, February 25 at 2 pm ET. IFC began airing the Spirit Awards in 1994.
“The Film Independent Spirit Awards provide an important platform for emerging independent voices, celebrating the industry’s best and brightest,” said Jennifer Caserta, President of IFC. “It’s a true privilege for IFC to remain the broadcast home for the Film Independent Spirit Awards and we are pleased to continue our longstanding and successful relationship.”
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MARK YOUR CALENDARS
The ninth season of Velocity’s “Chasing Classic Cars” will open on Wednesday, March 15 at 9 p.m. ET. In the first episode, collector car archeologist Wayne Carini heads to upstate New York to hunt down the only 1930 Minerva (bodied by Hibbard & Darrin) ever made but finds more than he ever bargained for.
“Fargo” will return on FX for season three on Wednesday, April 19 at 10 p.m. ET. Set in 2010, the third installment centers on “Emmit” and his slightly younger brother “Ray Stussy” (Ewan McGregor). Emmit, the Parking Lot King of Minnesota, sees himself as an American success story, whereas Ray is more of a cautionary tale. Forever living in his more successful brother’s shadow, Ray is a balding and pot-bellied parole officer with a huge chip on his shoulder about the hand he’s been dealt – and he blames his brother. Their sibling rivalry follows a twisted path that begins with petty theft but soon leads to murder, mobsters and cut-throat competitive bridge.
Fox has appointed Tommy Gargotta Executive Vice President of Creative Marketing, where he will oversee the network’s on-air promotions and design departments, spanning the network’s print, outdoor, broadcast and digital design strategy and innovation. Gargotta recently was President of Theatrical Marketing for Relativity Europacorp Distribution (RED), where he managed the marketing campaigns for EuropaCorp’s and Relativity Media’s U.S. releases including “Masterminds,” “Miss Sloane,” “The Circle” and “Valerian.” Prior to his work at RED, Gargotta was President of Worldwide Creative Advertising for Sony Pictures.
ON THE AIR TONIGHT “The Blacklist: Redemption” debuts on NBC out of the winter finale of parent “The Blacklist.”“How To Get Away With Murder” concludes for the season on ABC.The five broadcast networks are in all originals. For the schedule listings for Thursday, Feb. 23, click here
PI POLLS Who do you think will win this year’s Oscar for Best Actor? Clickhere
TRIVIA CHALLENGE Comedy Male Style
Which one of the following five sitcoms managed to survive for a second season?
a) “Freddie” b) “George” c) “Lenny” d) “Monty” e) “Reggie” f) None of them did
The answer to yesterday’s question…
Which one of the following dramas moved from a broadcast to a cable network?
a) “Father Dowling Mysteries” b) “In the Heat of the Night” c) “Matlock” d) “Roswell” e) “Southland”
…e) “Southland.” When NBC decided to cancel crime drama “Southland” after one season, TNT stepped up to the plate and kept it on the air for another four seasons. A total of 43 episodes were produced for “Southland” during its 2009-2013 run.
Mark Amato, Sally Bialek, Gerry Bixenspan, Matt Bradley, Elvis Bussard, Larry Cauble, Larry Collins, Tom Condosta, John Ferlazzo, Gail Goins, Suzy Goldman, Caryn Gray, Jeff Greenberg, Bob Ingersoll, David Jackino, Ken Jobe, Tom Kilgallon, Synda Kollman, Steve La Rue, Jody McIntyre, Tom Moore, Matthew Morse, Jennifer O’Malley, Alan Perris, Alex Petrilli, Gordon Purcell, Michael Ratliffe, Joe Rubi, Joe Rice, Derek Rogers, Jay Rossi, Art Salish, Larry Smith, Mark Maxwell-Smith, Scott Smolev, Ralph Tobias, Nina Lisa Tomlinson, John Wick