Ratings: Mr. Sunshine Bright In Debut, as Modern Family Ties All-Time High

Could ABC be more pleased?

The Wednesday night forecast called for more Sunshine than expected (given middling reviews), as ABC’s Matthew Perry-fronted comedy premiered to better-than-Cougar Town numbers.

Specifically, Mr. Sunshine drew 10.57 million total viewers and a 3.7 rating in the coveted 18-49 demo, improving on Cougar Town‘s season-to-date average by 32 percent.

More superlatives: Sunshine‘s demos were up 9 percent from Cougar Town‘s own series premiere, it gave ABC its best Wednesdays-at-9:30 numbers in 16 months, and it also marked the Alphabet network’s strongest scripted midseason debut since March 2007.

Of course the real test, as with any new series, comes when folks decide whether to show for Week 2.

Elsewhere on Wednesday:

8/7c | With 23.7 million total viewers and a 8.3 rating, American Idol enjoyed week-to-week retention of 94 percent. CBS’ Live To Dance took its final steps before an audience of 4.8 million.

9/8c | Criminal Minds topped the hour in total audience with 14.3 million viewers (up 18 percent), while Modern Family (13.1 mil/5.0) tied its all-time high in viewers. Human Target‘s Season 2 finale (8.3 mil/2.4) dipped 10 percent from its week-ago high.

10/9c | Blue Bloods copped its largest audience since its debut (12.45 million, up 11 percent) and surged 44 percent to hit a series high in the demos (2.3). SVU (8.1 mil/2.7) slipped 9 percent, while Off The Map saw a slight uptick in viewership, drawing 5.56 mil.

What were you watching this Wednesday? And if you checked out Mr. Sunshine, will you be back for seconds next week?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Sam says:

    Anything that brings Allison Janey to my television again on a full time basis is fine by me. Bonus points for Andrea Anders.

    • Midori says:

      Allison Janey was great, singing that racist song and throwing children around, what’s isn’t to love about her? :)

    • Sydney says:

      I watched Mr. Sunshine because I love Matthew Perry- I was so sad when Studio 60 was canceled/ended but at least I have the DVD. Forgot to record Blue Bloods (but thank goodness for Hulu) Watched/recorded Off the Map for the 2nd time. Can’t wait for Cougar Town to come back soon!

  2. Gambs says:

    That’s the first time Chandler ever dominated Monica.

  3. Mr.Bates says:

    …Yeah, give it a week. So far all the reviews I’ve heard and read from friends have not been good.
    I turned it off before the 2nd commercial.
    Than again, I loathed Cougar Town when it first aired. They changed for formula and I now LOVE the damn show. Penny can!

    • John says:

      Most of the reviews I’ve read about Sunshine say pretty much the same thing: rough start, rich premise, good cast, and it’ll probably be good down the line, much like Cougar Town.

  4. Rock Golf says:

    Finally an Andrea Anders sitcom is nestled gently after Modern Family. I wish it were the late lamented Better Off Ted, but Mr. Sunshine got off to a great start.

  5. Matt says:

    As long as this does not prevent Cougar Town from returning. It’s one of the best comedies on TV right now.

    • Midori says:

      There are most likely only 13 episodes of Mr. Sunshine, so in 12 weeks something will need to take it’s spot no matter what.

      • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

        MR SUNSHINE airs its final episode on April 6, so yes, the Wednesdays-at-9:30 time slot will be vacated then regardless.

  6. Kristen says:

    It may still need a bit of tweaking, but it’s got a good premise and a hilariously funny actress in Allison Janney. It’s worth watching for her performance alone!

  7. Chmarin says:

    Mr. Sunshine wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. It needs some tweaking, but there’s potential. But still, it shouldn’t have more viewers than Cougar Town.

    I’m afraid that ABC will now renew Mr. Sunshine and create a former-Friends combo: Cougar Town/Mr. Sunshine and place it on Tuesday nights where the two shows will die a slow and painful death. ABC wants to launch a new comedy in the fall behind Family (I mean c’mon, they’re 2/2 so far – if the ratings for Sunshine stick, of course), and they’ve also expressed wishes to launch a second comedy block.

    Geez, I hope I’m wrong.

    Also, it’s going to be ridiculously funny to see CBS’ press release in a week, once Survivor premieres: CBS improves its Wednesday 8pm average by 245%!

  8. Dirk says:

    I was extremely underwhelmed — I went into it with low expectations. It’s going to need a lot of tweaking in order to succeed.

  9. peggy says:

    Personally I thought I was watching a non-funny version of “Better Off Ted”. I can’t understand ABC cancels a hilarious show like “Better Off Ted” then just remakes it only this time around it wasn’t as funny. The character that Andrea Anders played was any different than Linda, I thought the character was just having a bad dream and woke up on another show.

  10. KC says:

    I know it was the first episode but is was bad! Allison Janey was they only good thing about the show. I try to give it one more chance but Mathew Perry just was not funny.

  11. brynna says:

    Laughed my butt of during Mr. Sunshine. Hope it does well next week. Would love to see it and Cougar Town paired next season. ABC needs a second night of comedies, they keep coming up with amazing shows, well except for last years HANK. ugh.

  12. Evie says:

    I liked it a lot, which was very unexpected. It reminded me a little of Arrested Development — just a touch, probably Janey’s character did it. I’m definitely watching again next week. The only comedy I now watch is Modern Family, so it’ll be nice to find another I like.

  13. AlistairCrane says:

    This is the premiere. Ratings for Sunshine will probably drop. I’m just glad Cougar Town has already been renewed so we don’t have to worry!

  14. PV says:

    I really enjoyed Mr Sunshine. It made me laugh and the frenetic pace I found really appealing. Its not suave, its kinda insane – which is great.

    I miss Cougartown, but Mr Sunshine is a good replacement. I will definitely be watching next week.

  15. P says:

    I really liked the pilot! It wasn’t perfect, but most pilots are not perfect! It seem like a good and funny show, so I will be watching next week.

  16. jan says:

    Cougar Town’s series premiere had a 4.4 rating (18-49) in 2009, so it premiered better than Mr. Sunshine. I already miss my Cul-De-Sac Crew!

  17. Crystal says:

    Can someone please find out who designed Andrea Anders dress? It is so cute! This is a great show! I love the cast, and need the dress!

  18. Buddy says:

    This sucks for Human Target. I hope Fox can be patient and give the series another try. It could be good, like the first season — again.

  19. KevyB says:

    There is no way this show won’t drop big time in week two. It was AWFUL! And as much as critics want to compare it to Cougar Town, Cougar Town was at least still mildly funny when it was about actual cougars. This was pretty much laugh-free, even with the great Allison Janney. I’m giving it one more week but all it’s doing is reminding me that Matthew Perry was way better on Friends and that Andrea Anders was on a WAY better show (Better Off Ted) that ABC refused to move into a plush Wednesday time slot, which this crapfest IS getting.

  20. Jeri says:

    I watched it but have to say “it was shockingly bad.” Big waste of talent.

    I hope it improves but it’s not looking good.