No breakout hits yet on Canada skeds

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TORONTO -- As the fall TV season gets under way in Canada, no rookie or returning U.S. primetime series has local broadcasters reaching for the champagne just yet.

Fox sitcom "Back to You" bowed Wednesday night at 8 p.m. on Global Television with 542,000 viewers in the 18-49 demo, according to BBM Nielsen Media Research -- this in a national TV market where 1 million viewers constitutes a primetime hit.

Canadians tuning in the Kelsey Grammer-Patricia Heaton starrer, had to miss the first 30 minutes of controversial CBS reality series "Kid Nation," which airs at 8 p.m. Wednesdays on the rival E! Canada network.

E! Canada, which is not available in all major Canadian markets, reported that "Kid Nation" secured a mildly disappointing 113,000 viewers in the 18-49 demo in Toronto and another 86,000 viewers in Vancouver.

Last Thursday's premiere of "Survivor: China" on Global Television pulled in 2.5 million viewers in the 18-49 demo, up 4% from last spring's "Survivor: Fiji" edition.

The CW's "Gossip Girl" was the only rookie U.S. series bowing on CTV, the country's ratings leader. The teen drama pulled in 349,000 viewers in the 18-49 demo Tuesday night at 7 p.m., as it aired one night and one hour earlier than the Wednesday slot on the CW in the U.S.

"Gossip Girl" comes from Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, the creators of "The O.C.," a past stellar performer for CTV.

CTV also has high hopes for ABC's "Big Shots, which bows Thursday night at 10 p.m.

On the home front, the Canadian miniseries "St. Urbain's Horsemen" disappointed for the Canadian Broadcasting Corp., bringing in 306,000 viewers in its first Wednesday night last week, before it slipping to 257,000 viewers Thursday night.

CTV's "Corner Gas," Canada's top-rated sitcom, was scheduled to received its fifth-season bow Monday night in a new time slot following ABC's "Dancing With the Stars."
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