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DVR “Revolution” Is Here; Bills Ratings Drop

Confession time: I rarely watch any prime time TV shows when they are scheduled to air.

My goal is to save time.

I usually watch series after DVRing them to fast forward through commercials or On Demand when many of the shows run less than an hour even if the fast forward option is disabled to force viewers to watch some commercials or promos.

Many of you watch the same way, according to local figures for the first week of the November sweeps.

NBC’s “Revolution” gained more than a third of its local audience from viewing up to seven days after it airs at 10 p.m. Monday. The 8.8 live rating rose to a 14.1 rating – a gain of 5.3 ratings points.

To put that in perspective, the program getting the second most viewers up to seven days after its scheduled airing was ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy,” which rose by 3.4 points from an 8.8 live rating to a 12.2 rating. The secondary viewership of “Grey’s Anatomy” is especially impressive considering how long Patrick Dempsey and all the other docs have been on ABC.

Patrick Dempsey: “Grey’s” Still Going Strong

CBS’ sophomore series “Person of Interest” gained 2.8 ratings points from a 12.5 to a 15.3. CBS’ “Big Bang Theory” also gained 2.8 points from a 20.3 to a 23.1 rating. “Bang” was the highest-rated prime time program in WNY during the first week of the sweeps.

Other shows that saw gains of more than two ratings points included NBC’s “The Voice,” “Grimm” and “Law & Order: SVU”’; CBS’ “Hawaii 5-0” (which airs opposite “Revolution”), “Blue Bloods, “Criminal Minds,” CSI:NY,” “CSI” and “Elementary”; and ABC’s “Modern Family” and “Revenge.” The gain of “Modern Family” is even more impressive since it is the only program that isn’t on Time Warner’s Primetime On Demand channel.

With the exception of first-year series “Revolution” and “Elementary,” almost all the big gainers are series that have been on the air for multiple seasons or premiered last season.

That brings up one of the downsides of secondary viewing. The older series that get the most recording reduce the viewing of newer series, which haven’t established any loyalty yet. That means there are fewer hits each year. “Revolution” and “Elementary” are the only new shows that could be classified as hits.

NBC’s “Chicago Fire” and ABC’s “Nashville” are doing reasonably well here running opposite each other at 10 pm. Wednesday. “Fire” – which already has been renewed for a full season by NBC – wins here over “Nashville,” which had a stronger pilot but has become somewhat tedious in subsequent episodes.

NBC actually is having a decent season of rookie shows for Channel 2. Even the comedy that has already been canceled by the network, “Animal Practice,” is getting stronger ratings here than “The Office” in its final season and its faux documentary cousin “Parks & Recreation.”

Of course, CBS programs carried by Channel 4 remain by far the highest-rated in WNY. They normally appeal to traditional and older viewers than Fox, NBC and ABC series and there are more of those viewers here than there are nationally.

WBEN-AM appears to be taking a shot at the Buffalo News’ recent move to charge readers for substantial online content. The station’s promos note its content on the air and online remains free. One risk The News it taking by charging is sending readers to free sites like those of the local TV news and radio stations. As many oldtimers know, WBEN used to be owned by the same owner of The News and its call letters — BEN — even were named for Buffalo Evening News.

Some Facebook readers seem to think that WBBZ – which is carrying the Bills-Miami game on Thursday – isn’t carried in high definition. It isn’t in HD on DirecTV, but it is carried in HD on Time Warner, FiOS and DISH.

I thought the Buffalo News story about the early start of Christmas music on radio was really amusing, though it was about a year late. According to a radio expert, Christmas music started playing on radio in Western New York around Nov. 9 in 2011, too. Like many radio listeners, I’d rather watch another political ad than hear a Christmas tune on radio before Thanksgiving. I’d even rather listen to a WBEN talk show than a Christmas tune now. Well, almost.

MSG play-by-play man Mike Breen gave St. Bonaventure some love Tuesday night during the New York Knicks victory over the Orlando Magic and former Bona star Andrew Nicholson. Noting that J.R. Bremer was the last Bonnie to play in the NBA, Breen added “it is nice to see St. Bonaventure represented” again. Then analyst Walt Frazier recalled some past Bona players in the pros, including Fred Crawford. I didn’t hear Bona’s most famous pro – Bob Lanier – mentioned, but I joined the game and the conversation late.

The Bills exciting 37-31 loss to New England Sunday had a season-low 26.8 rating on Channel 4. Blame the unseasonably great weather. Or blame the Bills lousy first half of the season. The games usually get ratings in the 30s. I expect the rating to go back into the 30s for the Bills-Miami game Thursday night on WBBZ and The NFL Network.


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8 responses to "DVR “Revolution” Is Here; Bills Ratings Drop"

  1. Ian says:

    The Bills rating is a combination of apathy (especially playing in New England…horrible record there for years)and an incredible weather day. I was at the zoo during the game, and it was absolutely packed (as was Delaware Park).

  2. Tina says:

    Not too sure if anyone else watches Lawrence O’Donnel on MSNBC but last night he could not stop raving about the Buffalo News and its endorsement of Hillary Clinton for president in 2016. He must have mentioned the Buffalo News 15 times and even had a special segment dedicated to it. He was pretty delighted at the thought of Hillary being our next president. I couldn’t agree with him more!!
    4 more years and 4 more after that..yahoo.

  3. Katherine says:

    I do the same thing. I like too many shows and have too much to do every day to watch hour-long shows. I also work evenings at DISH, so I miss prime time shows when they air anyway. I watch everything on my DISH Hopper, which has Auto-Hop and allows me to automatically skip commercials on any recorded prime time show from the four major networks the day after they air. It saves me a lot of time, and I’m glad to hear that networks are taking DVR viewership into account, so it doesn’t hurt the shows’ ratings too much, either.

  4. Kristine says:

    I am curious about whether you have any new thoughts about the show “Criminal Minds.” I found myself watching reruns at some point and now I watch it regularly. I remember your review of the show and agreed with your comments about excessive amount of gruesome content. What I’m more interested in is why this show is still popular and whether is has anything to do with the fact that it is becoming easier to watch at times. A prime example is the last season finale was a bank heist and a wedding.

  5. bill m says:

    Re: WBEN…You mean the radio and TV stations that rely heavily on The Buffalo News to supplement their own newsgathering? Didn’t Murray Light once thank a local radio station for providing The Buffalo News for the blind?

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