NBC's 'The Paul Reiser Show' Bombs


After getting drubbed by the critics, viewers also overwhelmingly rejected Paul Reiser’s return to series comedy. Last night’s premiere of The Paul Reiser Show – which, like Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm, has its star playing a thinly veiled version of himself – was down almost 50 percent compared to the January premiere of Perfect Couples. 

In fact, it was NBC’s lowest-rated in-season comedy premiere ever.
The show averaged a meager 1.1 rating in the 18-49 demographic with just 3.3 million viewers overall, putting it at the bottom of the ratings pile behind a rerun of CBS’ Rules of Engagement (1.3, 5.8 million). Even CW’s The Vampire Diaries (1.3, 2.8 million) bested Reiser in the demo in head-to-head competition. 
But NBC managed to recover to take second place for the night behind Fox. At 9 p.m., The Office (3.9, 7.6 million), the first of multiple episodes featuring Will Ferrell, was up 15 percent week-to-week. Parks and Recreation (2.6, 5.2 million) was up 8 percent, 30 Rock (2.2, 4.5 million) posted a 16 percent gain and Outsourced (1.7, 3.5 million) was up 21 percent week-to-week.
For the night, NBC averaged a 2.1 rating with 4.6 million viewers followed by CBS (1.6, 8.5 million), and ABC (1.3, 4.4 million), which were in reruns, and Univision (1.3, 3.1 million).
Fox (4.6, 16.4 million) won the night with American Idol (6.1, 20.9 million), which saw Paul McDonald sent packing. Idol was flat week-to-week, while Bones (3.7, 11.9 million) was up 16 percent for its highest ratings in two months. 
Email: Marisa.Guthrie@thr.com