Cable Premiere Ratings: How Did White Collar, Justified and Southland Fare?

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The ratings for Tuesday night’s three big cable premieres have trickled in, and USA Network’s White Collar perhaps got off to the strongest start.

The “blue sky” procedural’s excellent midseason premiere drew 3.2 million total viewers, with 1.4 mil falling into the coveted 18-to-49 demo. That’s a loss of some eyeballs versus both its summer opener and a tiny dip in the demo, yet it qualified as Tuesday’s No. 1 cable drama. Elizabeth Burke, meanwhile, qualifies as TV’s No. 1 law enforcement wife, amiright?

FX’s Justified targeted 3.1 million total viewers, with 1.3 mil of ‘em landing in the 18-to-49 sweet spot. That’s down double digits from the acclaimed drama’s Season 2 premiere, but up 16 and 9 percent versus the sophomore run’s overall average.

TNT’s Southland, meanwhile, copped 1.8 million total viewers, with 783,000 landing in the 18-to-49 demo — down 14 and 11 percent from the show’s Season 3 opener.



Comments (30)

  • Oh no – is it time to start worrying about Southland already? :(

    Comment by Alex – January 19, 2012 10:09 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Well South land and The Closer are TNT only critically acclaimed shows. So it’s not possibly going to have to get the same big numbers as Rizzoli and Isles to get a renewal.

      Comment by George – January 19, 2012 11:43 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • More people need to watch Southland, seriously! In my opinion, it’s the best show on television, across the board, and certainly the best cop show, without question. The premiere was one of the best episodes to date, and that’s really tough to do considering Southland is consistently stellar.
    Matt, if those numbers hold steady, would it be enough for a potential renewal, or are we looking at the last season of Southland?

    Comment by DL – January 19, 2012 10:11 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • White Collar scored a 1.1 18-49 rating it was 1.4 million actual 18-49 viewers

    Comment by Ryan – January 19, 2012 10:12 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Yes, an edit has been made. I need to work on my penmanship as I jot down notes.

      Comment by Matt Webb Mitovich – January 19, 2012 10:17 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • White Collar also tends to do well when the +3 and +7 numbers come in, especially when it’s in the later 10pm time slot. A lot of time shifting going on. And it really was a good episode so people need to WATCH!

      Comment by CJ – January 19, 2012 10:17 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • The White Collar mid seaon premiere was amazing! Can’t wait for the rest of the season.

    Comment by Musica1 – January 19, 2012 10:15 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • By putting all these great shows up against each other in the same timeslot on Tuesday they are all losing eyeballs that they each deserve.

    Comment by Todd – January 19, 2012 10:19 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • True, but it makes my getting the TiVo quad channel dvr almost rational!

      IMOH that piling up scheduling is juvenile.

      Comment by John – January 19, 2012 10:35 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • White Collar is one of the most fun & entertaining shows on TV. The premier did not disappoint. I really hope it continues to do well.

    Comment by Deena – January 19, 2012 10:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Southland is a great show and clearly the best cop show on TV.

    Comment by Chuck – January 19, 2012 10:27 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Yes!

      Comment by DL – January 19, 2012 10:42 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Southland is great-the best show on TV, I think–and I’m SO glad TNT renewed it…but I didn’t necessarily think the 2012 premiere was up to par; I was slightly underwhelmed. Once the story line expands, I expect it to be as intriguing as ever.

      Comment by Sherry – January 20, 2012 09:20 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • All three of these shows are some of the best on television. If it weren’t for DVR I’d be really upset that they are competing with each other. I hope the network’s greed to rule the time slot doesn’t eventually kill these shows.

    Comment by Travis – January 19, 2012 10:42 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Southland is still one of the best cop drama I’ve seen in recent years. Hope this gritty series will survive throughout the whole season if TNT plans to renew it for Season Five depending on the status of its ratings.

    Comment by kevin – January 19, 2012 11:01 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I would hope TNT would let SouthLAnd finish as it should, especially since I loved that they saved the show from what happened at NBC.

      Comment by Winnie – January 19, 2012 12:47 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • White Collar is my favorite series right now!

    Comment by Linda – January 19, 2012 11:04 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Showing some love for Justified. In my opinion it is the best show on TV. Already can’t wait until next week!

    Comment by Meaghan – January 19, 2012 11:34 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I love White Collar and Southland but in Canada we do not get the USA network. TNT we get but you have to pay tons for it…Canadian channels were airing each a season behind but that stopped awhile ago

    Comment by s – January 19, 2012 12:12 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I still find it shocking that NBC gave up on this show, bet it would love the ratings it got back then. Such a great cast and superb storylines

    Comment by Jake – January 19, 2012 03:00 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • On “White Collar”, I really like that Elizabeth used her wits to give them clues and to escape on her own, instead of just waiting for them to come rescue her. She’s a great character and they should give her more screen time. Tiffani Thiessen (sp?) has the most gorgeous blue eyes.

    Comment by Anne – January 19, 2012 04:29 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Southland is the best show on t.v.! It’s the only show that I’d go ballistic over if my husband deleted it from the dvr; in fact, it’s the only show, I think, worthy of the dvr!

    Comment by KerriM – January 19, 2012 04:51 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I hope Justified doesn’t fall victim to a post-Margo Martindale slump the way Dexter did after the John Lithgow season. Having an amazing villain can really make a season.

    Comment by Bad Breaker – January 19, 2012 04:56 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I think you need not be concerned. I think Quarles, Limehouse, and Nix (so far) will do nicely in the bad guy dept…and then we have our beloved forever nemisis…Boyd Crowder. Face it we all love Justified and season 3 is better than season 2 which is just so amamzing.

      Comment by Linda – January 31, 2012 12:46 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Justified is the best show on television by far. Timothy Olyphant is fantastic as Marshall Givens! Can’t wait for the next episode!

    Comment by CKC – January 19, 2012 08:05 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • All three of these shows are so much better than what the major networks are offering these days. Justified and Southland had two of the strongest premiers of any shows I have seen this year.

    Comment by Terry – January 19, 2012 10:49 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I got an offer to watch the Southland premiere online from EW. That was a week before the show actually aired. Therefore I did not have to find room for it on my DVR with White Collar, Justified, PArenthood and everything else on Tuesdays at 10. That time slot is getting super difficult for me. I’ve recently decided to give up Body of Proof in favor of all these superb cable shows.

    Comment by Ryan – January 20, 2012 09:35 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I would love to know how Southland’s numbers for the season 3 finale compared to season 4 premiere. I don’t remember what the ratins were for season 3. It’s possible that the numbers went up as the season goes along.

    Comment by Paige – January 20, 2012 12:25 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I can not believe how few are speaking up for Justified that had such a strong premiere for season 3. They answered the question…we do miss Mags but we came back even better (how the heck they do it blows us away)with fascinating bad guys, good romance, well written storylines and the greatest cast EVER. Thank you to Yost, FX and mostly to Timothy Olyphant…our beloved Raylan Givens.

    Comment by Linda – January 31, 2012 12:41 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I don’t really like White Collar anymore. S1 was it’s best season. It’s not as exciting or witty anymore.

    Comment by Amy – May 25, 2012 04:32 AM PDT  Reply To This Post

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