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The CW is sticking with its three fall freshman dramas.
The news comes after the fall freshman dramas had received an early vote of confidence from the network, which picked up three additional scripts for each show in October ahead of Reign‘s premiere.
“In just a few seasons, we have built a much stronger primetime schedule,” CW president Mark Pedowitz said in a release announcing the news. “Our on-air ratings are up year-to-year, and our digital viewing continues to grow exponentially. We’re excited about the creative momentum the producers have established for all three of our new series, and now our fans will have the chance to see the full stories unfold for them this season. With the additional episodes ordered, plus two new dramas and new reality for midseason, we’ll be able to continue our commitment to adding more original programming all year long.”
The Originals, from Vampire Diaries boss Julie Plec, started its season on Thursdays following the premiere of The Vampire Diaries. The spinoff lost three-tenths of a point (0.9) from its lead-in and last year’s time-slot entry (Beauty and the Beast) before moving to its permanent home on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. In its permanent home, Originals came in just shy of its premiere with a 0.9. The series premiere, though, improved 50 percent when factoring in live-plus-3 DVR returns. The series posts even bigger gains when factoring in seven-day DVR viewing, averaging 2.5 million total viewers and a 1.2 in the demo.
The Tomorrow People, from executive producers Greg Berlanti and Plec, matched last year’s debut of Supernatural in its Wednesdays at 9 p.m. slot, posting a 0.9 among adults under 50. Including seven-day DVR growth, the series starring Robbie Amell is averaging 2.2 million viewers and a 0.9 in the demo.
For its part, Reign was the last of the network’s fall series to debut. The heavily marketed period drama scored a 0.8 among adults 18-49, ranking as The CW’s lowest-rated Thursday premiere ever. But the series has held steady in the demo and has picked up steam among critics.
Season to date, The CW is up 9 percent year-over-year in total viewers and up 10 percent among adults 18-49. When adding DVR and digital viewing — the network’s bread and butter — 31 percent of its total broadcast audience now comes from time-shifted viewing. Digital viewing is up 50 percent year-over-year and the three new series combined see 84 percent more digital viewing than the network’s rookie class last year.
Meanwhile, The CW has freshman dramas The 100 and Star-Crossed on the bench.
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William Jackson Harper