Ratings: ABC Sitcoms Hit Series Highs as Rivals Are Rife With Repeats

ABC was smiling on Wednesday night as its roster of original funny fare all hit all-time highs — in part due to the fact that NBC and CBS (save for Survivor) were both in pre-sweeps repeat mode, while Fox’s offering of Glee repeats took a bath in the wake of the rained-out World Series Game 6.

ABC’s largesse kicked off with The Middle, which with 10.2 million total viewers and a 3.1 demo rating was up 12 and 3 percent from last week. Suburgatory (9.83 mil/3.4) then delivered gains of 10 percent.

At 9 o’clock, Modern Family‘s circa-2010 Halloween episode (11.36 mil/4.4) gave the ABC comedy its best repeat numbers ever, teeing up Happy Endings for all-time bests of 8.34 mil and 3.5 (surging 22 and 17 percent).

ABC capped its good night with a deliciously frothy bit of Revenge (8.7 mil/2.7), which surged 8 percent to deliver its second-largest audience to date.

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Elsewhere on the night:

* While ABC dominated the demos, CBS topped Wednesday in total viewers, leading off with its one piece of fresh fare, Survivor. The veteran reality competition drew 11.6 million total viewers — its biggest audience since December 2010/Nicaragua — while scoring a 3.4 demo rating (up 3 percent week-to-week). At 9 pm, the Criminal Minds repeat matched Modern Family‘s audience of 11.36 mil, but got smoked in the demo. Come 10 o’clock, a CSI rerun edged out Revenge in viewers (with 9 mil).

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* Fox’s aforementioned Glee repeats averaged about 2.5 mil and a 0.7.

* America’s Next Top Model hit season highs in audience (2.23 mil) and in the demo (with a 1.0).

What were you watching this Wednesday?

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  1. Sourabh says:

    Was I the only one who didn’t know Modern Family was going to be a repeat?

  2. Alex says:

    Always glad when good comedies do well. Interesting that Happy Endings is lower in viewers but higher in the demo than The Middle and Suburgatory. I didn’t even mind that Modern Family was a repeat, such a good episode.

    • B says:

      Agreed, Alex – I rarely watch repeats anymore (have way too much on the DVR to catch up on for that) but this one I had to, it’s such a great episode.

  3. Tucker says:

    First time I’ve caught an episode of Happy Endings this season and it was cracking me up. Seems to have gelled much better than it was last season.

  4. Intelliwoman says:

    Anyone who watches sitcoms must be sitting on their brain. What a waste!!!!

  5. Jesse says:

    I’m sure that ABC is happy that one of its freshman dramas is doing well, but would you really consider Revenge’s 8% uptick to be a “surge”?

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      Let’s not split hairs, shall we? :)

    • CJ says:

      What’s always funny to me in the discussion of ratings is referring to percentage increases. A really low-rated show is said to have a 10% uptick in 18-49s–which sounds like a reason for fans of the show to rejoice–but then you look at the actual numbers, and it went from a 1.0 to a 1.1.

      • Tucker says:

        Hey, 10% is a 10%. No one complains about a 10% raise at work, do they? ;-)

        • CJ says:

          No one would, but no one gets 10% raises at work anymore. You’re right, but what I meant to say above was that a single tenth of a point uptick in the ratings is nothing make a big deal about–unless it’s part of a trend. In ratings, it seldom is.

    • Mika says:

      I love Revenge so anything that ensures its renewal I’ll be happy with.

  6. I.C. says:

    Matt Webb Mitovich, I like your name. You also seem cool.

  7. Isaac says:

    Saddened there’s no mention of last night’s American Horror Story.

  8. T says:

    Hopefully this means Happy Endings will get a full pickup now

  9. Pam says:

    I thought last night’s Suburgatory was really cute!

    And I tend to catch the tail end of Happy Endings quite often and find it pretty funny. I really need to add that to my rotation. And I think the increased numbers may be Damon Wayans Jr one episode stint on New Girl. He was the funniest part of the show… then he left. :|

  10. Jorge Jose Herrera says:

    What a great night of comedy! While The Middle has seen its funnier nights, I really enjoyed Mike and Sue in this episode. It was incredibly sweet. Suburgatory almost had me rolling on the floor because I was laughing so hard. Allie Grant and Jane Levy are both fantastic actresses. Modern Family, while a repeat, is still funny. One of their best episodes. Finally, Happy Endings was as good as ever.

  11. fernando says:

    Yes I’m doing my happy dance, im so happy for Revenge rising in viewers, I hope it stays in the 8 million lol.

  12. Aidan says:

    Revenge is amazinggg. especiall last nights episode. It neeeeeds to get renewed. Keep on surgin up in the ratings!

  13. Ellen says:

    My local station bumped The Middle and Suburgatory for local content. When I tuned into Mod Fam, I was disappointed that it was a repeat and turned the TV off. I thought ABC was all repeats and missed everything!

  14. Sue says:

    Revenge is frothy fun. Hope it gets picked up.

  15. Josh says:

    Does no one actually read the articles posted here? Revenge has been picked up for a full season stint, and as for AHS, this article was really about the ABC shows doing well. IT says it in the headline. Not to make any one feel bad, but maybe we should start paying attention to know what we’re taling about. Sorry. :(

  16. Bernadette says:

    Matt – thanks for pointing out that the other networks had scheduled repeats up against a possible World Series game. I appreciate when journalists tell the whole story.

  17. Grace says:

    This may be a stupid question, but these are still Nielsen ratings right? Meaning only people with Nielson boxes get counted?

  18. Amber says:

    Happy Endings is really becoming a pretty good series. The 1st season I wasn’t really on the bandwagon there, but the 2nd season has been pleasing me enormously.

  19. eric says:

    Happy Endings was so great last night..Max with his baby hands, the Borat line, a night in the suburbs…so genius.