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October 15 2014

Ratings for last night's Agents of SHIELD episode. Now that the final ratings are in, the show got a 1.7/5 in the 18-49 demo.

That's still ahead of the averages for Revenge, Forever, Last Man Standing, Selfie, Manhattan Love Story and Cristela. Not to mention any upcoming mid-season replacements that will ultimately fail. Not the best ratings ever, but Agents of SHIELD will be fine. Plus it does well with timeshifted Nielson viewers.

I'm just happy the Tuesday edition of The Voice is just an hour now. My sister watches it forcing me to timeshift AoS. Which is fine, except for ABC/Hulu's moronic "8 days later" policy.

[ edited by JesusSavedIn01 on 2014-10-15 17:13 ]
It's slipping? But it's so good!
It will almost certainly bump up to a 1.7 in the final daily ratings, and then roughly double its viewership by the time the +7 ratings are out. It's about the same as last week, though I think the total viewers are down a bit.

If the show stabilizes at 1.5 or better in the overnights, it should be fine. I'd hoped it would be higher, but it is what it is. I hope for an RDJ guest shot at some point to put it back on people's radar. Also, Joss Whedon says he'd like to join the writing staff after he's done with A2, and that should help as well.

And I can't imagine what ABC thinks it's gaining from its week-long delay on Hulu. Probably trying to push people to watch their commercial-laden On Demand option instead, but viewers don't like being told how to watch their TV shows.
What I don't understand, though, is why the show is slowly losing viewers as it's gotten so much better. Is it because it is opposite shows that many of the same viewers also watch (i.e. Supernatural)? I know it will be revised upward, but it's still slowly hemorrhaging.

Do you think the ratings would improve if Joss was writing for it?
I think you take a hit when you get into heavy serialisation on network TV.
Unless I'm mistaken, the numbers have been about the same for 3 straight weeks give or take a .1 or so. I mainly check the ratings to ensure that there is no fall-off-the-cliff drop off. I'm encouraged that the numbers are pretty consistent this season and the second half of last. It's a 1.5-1.8 kind of show as constituted.

I think what ABC must do immediately is fix the lead in issue. Selfie dropped again, and Manhattan is still below a 1.0 (!), never mind that I'm not sure two new sitcoms are appropriate prior to a genre show. Either way ABC has some shuffling to do on Tuesdays, and that concerns me more than the status quo.

Finally - I think we wildly inflate a particular writer/actors appeal beyond their fandom. I honestly don't think publicity centered on Joss writing an episode would be worth more than a .1 or .2 bump. RDJ might be a little more - but only if Iron Man made an appearance. As popular as he is, his current movie tanked last week. So, for my OWN personal enjoyment I'd be all for it, but I doubt Joe TV Viewer would change their habits much
I wonder if ABC has anything on deck to replace the two lead-ins. They should have a pretty strong bench... they have no fewer than 10 shows at 2.0 or better in the ratings so far this fall. (Even the mighty CBS only has 7.) I have to think that somewhere, they've got a promising genre hour-long waiting in the wings to serve as a mid-season replacement.

Joss writing an episode may only be worth .1 or .2, but he's said he wants to sign up as a staff writer, meaning maybe several episodes a season. And his presence in the writer's room (even if he's not showrunning) might really help the younger writers get polished, find a consistent voice, and punch things up a bit.

If they do get RDJ to guest, I don't know that they really need any new footage of him in the suit (they must have some unused footage from the movies they could splice in if necessary). They just need him to be billionaire playboy philanthropist wise-ass Tony Stark... I think that's more key to the character's success than the suit or even the action.

I'd really want to get Joss to write that episode, though. They'd have to put their absolute best foot forward with it, because if people tune in for it and are disappointed, they're never coming back.
@Nebula1400, the same thing happened with Angel and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. The shows got better while the ratings got worse. I don't think Joss joining the writing staff will necessarily make the ratings rise (Angel: Season 1, the only season Joss wasn't a member of the writing staff, was Angel's highest rated by far). Once you lose a chuck of the audience it's difficult to bring them back, even with a sweeps event.

I'm more than happy to have him on board though. Another solid writer on the already pretty solid writing staff couldn't hurt creatively. All we need is a full pick-up order for next season and (due to syndication deals) a fourth season is almost guaranteed. Even if AoS (like Angel) never becomes the hit it once was, I'm more than happy with its continued existence.

[ edited by JesusSavedIn01 on 2014-10-15 20:51 ]
I hadn't previously heard that Joss wanted to join the writers' room! Woo!
ABC has five dramas to premiere this season that currently don't have airdates. American Crime, Astronaut Wives Club, Members Only, Secrets and Lies, and The Whispers. They also have Galavant but that is reserved for OUAT's timeslot just like Agent Carter is reserved for AoS' slot.

Joss writing will have no impact on ratings. Very few people would notice or care. Also, these ratings are fine to good. There is no need to worry. Show is handily winning its timeslot with men 18-34 and men 18-49.
I'm still hoping that Joss gets to write at least one episode this season, maybe the Age of Ultron tie-in. And as Andrew indicated, his mere presence in the writer's room should help improve the show, not that I'm complaining on the current direction.
What is happening is simple. Scripted television is becoming non appointment viewing. Shows like AoS are heavily dvr'd. In this
case I suspect that a large part of the change since 2.01 reflects people who watched the premiere live and who are gradually shifting
back to dvr viewing. Also the total TV audience has been decreasing every week since the new season opened. Something that happens
every year as the new wears off. In other words its expected.
Not arguing with any of the explanations. As long as the show stays on long enough for Joss to come up with something else that we'll love and will inevitably be cancelled, it will be fine. 🙊 It's also encouraging that The Flash took such a big hit in one week. (I like the show, but DVRs...)

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2014-10-15 22:34 ]
"And I can't imagine what ABC thinks it's gaining from its week-long delay on Hulu."

What ABC is gaining is a lot of money from the deals it makes with the cable companies that you have to be a subscriber of to be able to watch on ABC Watch the day after eps air before they're made available to all a week later (same as Hulu).

As for ratings slipping, they're really not. They're on par with the latter part of last season. There's a slight drop in the overnights which can reasonably be attributed to the poor lead ins but the first ep of season 2 was actually the most watched & had the highest in the demo since February's episode T.R.A.C.K.S once DVR +7 numbers are added in. The show is also still winning the timeslot for the night once DVR numbers are added so the viewers aren't bailing.
There we go, up to a 1.7/5.
... (with an increase 4.70 million viewers.)

If anyone wants a clear record of the ratings since the pilot we update the ratings table every week
Does anyone know why we aren't seeing Live +3 numbers anymore ? The last ones I can find are for Monday Oct 6th. The Live +7 numbers we did get this week are far less useful.
@Beth - Thank you, very helpful!
If Joss joins, I think it will definitely help the ratings. The quality of he show will increase and that will attract more viewers.
Joss is a celebrity now in a way he never was before The Avengers. It will draw attention to the show and remind people that it's a canon part of the MCU. If they want the whole story, they'd better watch the show.

It would also draw in some of the Whedon fans who lost interest after the pilot because "he's busy with the movies and really doesn't have anything to do with the show."
Whedon fans aren't enough viewers to save any show. If they were Firefly would have so many spin-offs by now. Happily Agents of SHIELD is not in any danger.
I say that the real mistep here was not putting it on Netflix to let people catch up over the summer if they lost interest. I've heard at least a few people who dropped put during S1 say they were going to wait until it was on Netflix... They're still waiting.
Whedon fans aren't numerous enough to save a failing show. They are numerous enough to bolster a mid-level show.

AoS may not be in any danger at the moment, but it is without question no better than a mid-level show. It *could* be a hit.

[ edited by AndrewCrossett on 2014-10-16 18:13 ]
At least it's a mid-level show with a steady audience. That's the kind of show that usually gets at least four seasons.
Re: Netflix. Based on a couple of recent cases they often don't get a show for streaming until after the third year. I think
(could easily be wrong) that this coincides with other secondary rights sales. The thing is AoS is already so heavily
sold abroad I have trouble seeing how that applies here.
It depends on the deal with the studio. Hannibal (NBC) came to Amazon streaming after season 1. For an apples to apples comparison, Scandal (also on ABC) went to Netflix after season 1. I was surprised Sleepy Hollow wasn't available on Netflix or Amazon, but then Fox announced a deal with Hulu and that was my answer.
Nielsen have revised last weeks ratings and it now says AoS got a 1.6. So it looks like it has actually increased this week in the overnights.

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