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Thursday was a strong night overall for broadcast programming, though ABC continues to have trouble getting new comedies off the ground.
First there was NBC transplant “Scrubs,” then “Better Off Ted” and now last night’s premiere of “In the Motherhood” (6.7 million viewers, 2.1 preliminary adults 18-49 rating). All pull roughly the same low 2s adult demo rating. Nothing disastrous, yet not really breaking through either, at least not yet.
Competition was extremely steep last night, though. “Motherhood” went up against Fox’s “American Idol” results show (22.4 million, 7.4), which was in the neighborhood of its previous Thursday airings, as well as CBS’ coverage of NCAA basketball (10.1 million, 3.5), which posted a 13% gain in the early numbers over last week, though was down a bit compared to its comparable game last year.
“Motherhood” did manage to edge out “My Name Is Earl” (5.9 million, 2.0) head to head, which NBC followed by a repeat. After “Motherhood,” ABC aired “Samantha Who” (6.5 million, 2.1) in its new time period, which matched its lead-in. ABC’s plan here is to try and give its medical soaps a better push than what “Betty” provides. And though last night’s new 8 p.m. comedy hour rated the same as what “Betty” pulled last week, “Grey’s” did jump 10% (15.8 million, 5.5) last night — either on its own accord, or due to the comedies offering more compatible viewers.
Placing second in the 9 p.m. hour was “Idol”-boosted “Hell’s Kitchen” (10.9 million, 4.7), up 12% to its best rating since its season premiere. While NBC’s comedies “The Office” (8.4 million, 4.3) and “30 Rock” (7.2 million, 3.4) were both up this week too.
At 10 p.m., ABC’s “Private Practice” (10.5 million, 3.8) was up 9% and “ER” (10.2 million, 3.5) climbed slightly as well.
The CW aired “Smallville” (3.7 million, 1.5) and “Supernatural” (3.2 million, 1.2) with the former unchanged from last week and the latter down a bit.
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