You may have come across many saying The Simpsons isn’t as popular as it once was – that’s a given, but the importance of it to Fox’s Sunday night schedule is clear to see.
Sunday night (September 25) saw the beginning of the predominance of this season’s Sunday lineup on US TV, with The Simpsons coming top for Fox and coming second outside of sports amongst the coveted 18-49 demographic. The season premiere, in the final ratings, had a 1.4 rating, down 0.1 from last year’s season premiere (and down from the preliminary ratings with a 1.552 in unrounded), but had 3.364 million viewers (adjusted down from prelims with 3.672 million viewers), up from last year’s 3.279 million viewers; in terms of viewers, the show came seventh on the night excluding sports. The show also had a 5% share in 18-49 viewers, and was the top show on FOX all night, being the only show over the 3 million barrier on the network.
Elsewhere, Fox’s lineup with veteran animated shows Family Guy and Bob’s Burgers was solid, with a 1.3/4 rating and 2.796 million viewers and a 1.1/4 with 2.601 million viewers respectively. New show Son of Zorn more than halved from its pre-season premiere to 1.1 and had just over a third of the premiere’s total viewers, with 2.821 million viewers. Zorn also had 4% of 18-49 viewers.
Ratings elsewhere were also deflated, with CBS and ABC especially suffering from strong opposition from NBC’s Sunday Night Football which peaked at over 7.6 and 21 million viewers, which won the night in both 18-49 and total viewers. CBS’ night was uplifted slightly by earlier football. FOX came third overall on the night.
FOX’s shows (at least which ones did) declined so much from preliminary ratings as NFL football ran late in 4% of the country and delayed the lineup in those areas, and so football ratings were included in the other shows, which were unscrambled in the final ratings.
Sources: TVByTheNumbers, SpottedRatings and ShowBuzzDaily