Jimmy Kimmel’s first 11:35 p.m. show on ABC last night opened at a solid 3.1 million viewers but fell short of NBC “Late Night With Jay Leno” by 200,000 viewers. He did beat his childhood late-night hero David Letterman on CBS by 200,000 viewers.
As noted in this Wall Street Journal story, one night hardly tells the story. This will be a long-term battle. Kimmel is two decades younger than Leno and Letterman and has been growing audience while the two elders have been gradually shedding viewers.
Kimmel’s show was moved back 25 minutes, as he swapped spots with “Nightline,’ which now airs at 12:35 a.m.
He also now competes fully or partly with Stephen Colbert on Comedy Central at 11:30 p.m. (1.54 million Tuesday night), Chelsea Handler on E! at 11 p.m. and Conan O’Brien on TBS at 11 p.m. (1.01 millon Tuesday)
TBS’s opening of “Cougar Town” last night fell a little flat: 2.2 million viewers, less than the openings for “Men at Work” and “Sullivan & Sons.”
The lead-in repeat of ‘The Big Bang Theory” drew more viewers than any other basic cable show last night: 3.78 million viewers. But “Cougar Town” did do better than the 10:30 p.m. repeat of “Big Bang,” which brought in 2.02 million. When “The Big Bang Theory” aired at 10 p.m. last week on Tuesday, it drew 3.66 million viewers followed by 3.37 million on 10:30 p.m. This indicates “Cougar Town” didn’t bring back the “Big Bang” fans at 10:30 p.m.
We’ll see where it goes in future weeks.
Go figure: “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” had its dullest episode of the season Sunday but still managed season high ratings of 3.7 million viewers, which is one of its best ever. This happened despite (or because) Bravo moved the show back an hour to 8 p.m.
The “Honey Boo Boo” Halloween special scared up 3.08 million viewers on Sunday, better than any of its regular season performances to date.
Neither TLC’s Atlanta-based “The Sisterhood” or “Totally T-Boz” did particularly well in their opening Jan. 1 episodes. (I don’t have last night’s numbers yet). “T-Boz” drew 937,000 viewers while “The Sisterhood” right afterwards pulled in 958,000 viewers.
Lifetime’s “Double Divas,” set in Kennesaw, looked more impressive. with 1.5 million viewers Jan. 1 in its opening salvo. But its lead-in was the ultra-powerful “Dance Moms,” which had 2.8 million. So it held barely half that audience. That’s not so great. The show goes to its regular time slot Jan. 10.