Ratings: Arrow Opens Very Strong, Nashville Solid and Chicago Fire Lukewarm

Arrow Nashville Chicago FireThe CW’s Arrow had an abs-olutely impressive debut on Wednesday night, delivering 4.02 million total viewers and a 1.3 demo rating — the network’s most watched episode of anything in three years and its highest rated drama bow since Nikita in 2010. (Last year, Ringer did 2.7 mil/1.2 while Hart of Dixie opened to 1.8 mil/0.7.)

Leading out of Arrow, Supernatural did 2.6 mil/1.0, up 37 and 25 percent from its premiere. Nice.

RELATED | Fall TV Poll: Did The CW’s Arrow Hit the Spot? Cast Your Vote

Turning to the night’s pair of 10 o’clock debuts: ABC’s Nashville drew 9 million viewers and a 2.8 rating, trailing CSI (10.6 mil/2.6) in total audience and down 11 and 15 percent from Revenge‘s Wednesday-at-10 series launch, but well above the initial numbers for NBC’s Chicago Fire, which placed a distant third in the hour with 6.4 mil/1.9.

RELATED | Fall TV Poll: Did Nashville Hit the Right Notes? Cast Your Vote

Nashville stands as ABC’s best drama debut since Once Upon a Time (which delivered last season’s highest rated freshman drama launch). And for comparison’s sake, The Whole Truth premiered to 4.9 mil/1.5 in the Wednesdays-at-10 slot while Off the Map opened with 7.5 mil/2.2.

Chicago Fire, meanwhile, built on its SVU lead-in by a tenth in the demo and improved on NBC’s prior-season average in the time slot by 19 percent.

RELATED | Fall TV Poll: Was Chicago Fire Hot… or Not? Cast Your Vote

Elsewhere on the night….

* Fox’s The X Factor was flat week-to-week with 9.4 million viewers and a 3.4 rating.

* Of ABC’s comedies, The Middle (7.8 mil/2.4 rating) was up 9 percent in the demo, The Neighbors (6.3 mil/1.9) was flat and the double-pump of Modern Family averaged 12.1 mil/4.8, down 16 and 13 percent from its season premiere. “Not a Real Man”!

* CBS’ Survivor (9.6 mil/2.6) was down 8 and 13 percent, while Criminal Minds was flat at 11.4 mil/3.0. CSI (10.6 mil/2.6) ticked up a tenth in the demo.

* NBC’s Animal Practice (3.9 mil/1.1) and Guys With Kids (4.2 mil/1.4) both dropped double digits, and SVU (6.2 mil/1.8) was down 14 percent.

What were you tuned into this Wednesday night? Next week: American Horror Story: Asylum premieres.

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76 Comments
  1. Moe says:

    That’s awesome for Arrow!! Any word on how Supernatural did? Really hoping that awesome show did well too, maybe pick up some Arrow viewers.

    • Ava says:

      SPN was up! Which is great because this is the strongest start of a season (story wise) they’ve had in years!!

    • Arrow was good and Supernatural did well with ratings too. I liked both shows.

      • Eli says:

        I A 1.3 makes it a “big hit” now?LOL, Arrow is the one-eyed king among the blind! If it weren’t on the CW this would be a flop. I liked the show, really did, but even cable shows get higher numbers these days. What is your curse CW, what is your curse?

        • Dean says:

          Basically it isn’t in many markets, not as invasive as the Big 4 and the rating system is archaic.

          • Drewer says:

            The CW is availible in 95% of American homes, people just don’t watch it as much, but Arrow, beat “Animal Practice,” so something on the CW beat something on another network!

        • J says:

          Actually, based on the numbers from the last couple years, you could argue that Arrow would instantly have bigger numbers on a network like CBS because, well, the people that watch TV that way still watch TV that way.

          CBS happens to own the CW though and decided it was better for the niche market of younger audiences. By the metrics of the CW, this is a big landing for them.

  2. WOW at Arrow , i wasn’t expecting this

    • iMember says:

      Just so the writer of the article knows, The Secret Circle earned a 1.3 in the Adult 18-49 rating last season and scored over 3 million viewers.

  3. Polly says:

    GO Arrow!!!

  4. Michelle says:

    YAY ARROW!

  5. Amanda says:

    Woo! Arrow! I watched CF, too. Hope it sticks around.

  6. Andrea says:

    Very good news for the CW.

    The half hours for Nashville are a little less than stellar.
    CF 1.9 6.56/ 1.9 6.31

    Nashville 3.0 9.53/ 2.5 8.42

    • Mike says:

      Nashville isn’t stellar because of ratings, it is only stellar because it is ABC highest new Drama premiere.

    • Jack says:

      That shedding in the second half has to be concerning for ABC. I read elsewhere that Chicago Fire’s retention of most of it’s first half of audience is rare and that should ease NBC concern, assuming they have any.

      • Eridapo says:

        With MF’s 4.9 lead-in, Nashville failed to impress. Next week the show will be down to a 2.0 to 2.2 rating like all the 10PM shows on ABC.

        CF too is off to a so-so start, but given the lead-in’s lack of support NBC will take it.

        The big winner last night at 10PM was 13 year old CSI. Even with all the new competition, the show still hit a 2.6, and next week it will regain its time-slot crown.

        • Marge says:

          ABC aired Revenge against CSI last year but it never came close in numbers. ABC still deemed it a hit–but moved it to Sunday night. Being a huge CSI fan for all it’s years—-hope Nashville follows the lead of Revenge. That equals a 14 season for CSI.

  7. George says:

    The CW might as well just announce the full season pick-up for Arrow this afternoon.

    • Max says:

      Along with a renewal for Season 2 and 3.

      • Lauren says:

        Look at the other shows mentioned though – Ringer did way better than HOD, but HOD was the one renewed, because its numbers were steady. Same with Secret Circle, started off strong and went down throughout the season. I’m sure Arrow will get a full-season renewal, but I wouldn’t start betting on further seasons until we see how well it does in later weeks.

        • Emily says:

          It’s worth noting that unlike Arrow, Ringer, HoD & TSC were at 9pm – expected to retain their 8pm lead-in. Especially TSC, which was basically supposed to be TVD 2.0. Arrow is boosting SPN instead of the other way around. Hmm, the CW does lend itself to its acronyms, doesn’t it. Anyway, yes, only time will tell.

  8. Adam says:

    WooHoo Arrow!!!

  9. I’m sorry and I know I might bashed with what i’m about to say by Micheal b/c he goes crazy for connie, but I did not like Nashville at all, and I was very much looking forward to it, I was trying to get into it but it just didnt do it for me. But I am smiling a little because Revenge premiere higher then it last year, Team Revenge forever and ever.

    I am super happy for Arrow, I really loved it, it was very dark for the CW and they need more shows like it.

    CF was ok but I decide to drop it and DVR Nashville, and watch AHS live.

  10. wrstlgirl says:

    Not surprising since the critics basically wrote Chicago Fire off as a failure before it ever hit the air. A lot of people are influenced by that so don’t bother to watch. It wasn’t great but one episode isn’t enough to form a fair opinion. I’ll watch it a few more times before I stay or go. If the network cancels it then so be it, I’m used to that and would rather form my own opinion. Arrow was good but I’m not fond of the lead, great abs yes, great acting no. Haven’t watched Nashville yet.

    • Elyse says:

      i loved Chicago Fire! i’ve never watched a show like it before but i really enjoyed it. i’ll keep watching.

      • wrstlgirl says:

        I know someone who has seen episodes 2 and 3 and say they are great so that’s good news. I just wish people would give a show a chance and not quit after just one episode. It takes a few to get into a groove.

  11. dude says:

    Loved Arrow! So happy it did that well. I’ve known it for a while but The CW definitely found their new Vampire Diaries.

  12. Mike says:

    Nashville did not have a great pilot, but I think it might get better throughout the season, since they were able to establish where this show is going for the season, so I’m hoping the next episode will be great.

    • dude says:

      The problem with Nashville’s pilot is that it was pure set-up and that’s all. Nothing really happened. They just set up things that could happen in the future. Out of the two pilots, I thought I’d like Nashville more but Arrow blew me away. So much happened in that hour that it just flew by where I was checking my watch a lot during Nashville. That said, I think it has a lot of potential. I just wasn’t impressed by the pilot.

  13. Patricia says:

    Wow good for Arrow and the CW I really enjoyed and can’t wait to see more. Hope I can catch them at NYC Comic Con this weekend.

  14. Dilys says:

    Thrilled that Supernatural got a boost in ratings. I loved Arrow – welcome to my Wednesday night viewing and absolutely ADORED this week’s episode of SPN. Cas is back! Great scene between Dean and Cas, loved Mrs. Tran – thank you JEREMY CARVER.

  15. Brandon says:

    So glad “Arrow” did so well last night!! Loved the dark tone of the show. It fits well with “Supernatural” on Wednesday nights.

  16. Matt C. says:

    I’m so happy for Arrow! I didn’t get to watch the premiere but I ordered a season pass on my TiVo. I’m glad to see The CW score ONE major success after so many failures over the last few years (I’m still shocked at the Gossip Girl and 90210 premieres both failing to get a million viewers).

    As for Nashville, I did get to watch that premiere live, and I LOVED it! Glad to see it got such great ratings, and hopefully they continue.

  17. Jacob says:

    Nashville was pretty awesome. The hype may have soured a lot of people, but I felt it lived up to it. Dramatically interesting with some already great, well-drawn characters. Usually shows take a few episodes to get into their groove, but I feel like Nashville knows what it is. Arrow was also a lot of fun. Some cheesy bits, and Stephen Amell’s acting leaves a bit to be desired, but Katie Cassidy is always someone I’m willing to allow on my TV. Combine that with Connie Britton, and Wednesday nights are looking pretty great for this guy.

  18. D'Arcy says:

    Considering Chicago Fire built on SVU, I would consider that a win. Comparing it to Nashville is foolish, if Chicago Fire (somehow) aired after Modern Family, I bet it would have similar numbers to Nashville. Nashville’s retention is alarming, but I think based on the reviews, it will hopefully climb.

  19. Antonia says:

    SPN was boring last night, but I’m happy that it got a nice bump. Arrow debuted really well, hope it can hold those numbers

  20. John says:

    Arrow? Meh.

    Nashville I’ll give a bit more time.

  21. Helen says:

    What is arrow about? I hope it’s only real stuff coz I hate anything vampires or supernaturals or science fiction :-)
    Is it similar to revenge? Love love revenge

  22. Mary says:

    Love me some Supernatural!

  23. Jacob says:

    FWIW, just read on Deadline that Revenge experienced a similar dip in its second half-hour during its premiere last year.

  24. Dean says:

    Awesome for Supernatural! It deserves those ratings and more! The storyline is very compelling!
    I thought Arrow’s premiere was frickin’ awesome! I had my doubts about the lead, but he was actually great! I have high hopes for this show. Everybody who love Nolan’s Batman universe should give it a shot.
    P.S: Love WILLA HOLLAND and she’s actually on something I watch!!!!!!
    P.P.S: Ruby 2.0 – Katie Cassidy!!

  25. Boiler says:

    Good for the CW. Now I say move Hart of Dixie to 9Eastern and give them a great lead in

  26. G says:

    I too am very happy and excited with how well Arrow debuted. I have already recommended it to friends that missed it. Repeat showing this Friday night on CW according to my tv listing so if you missed it you can check it out then.
    DVR’d Nashville and will watch once I have a free hour. Glad it did pretty well rating wise as well.

  27. Julie says:

    Can NBC just take this as news they need to put Community after Go On on Tuesdays and then move The New Normal and Whitney on Wednesdays?

    • Mike says:

      Go On and Community Tuesdays at 9pm and Whitney and Guys With Kids Wednesdays at 8pm; burn TNN on Fridays (or at least they SHOULD have done that, but then they went and ordered more episodes, stupidly, so now I’d say stick it on Thursdays when 30 Rock leaves or something).

    • LJW says:

      Community and Whitney on Fridays. They will be cancelled soon anyway.

  28. Jared says:

    I Loved Nashville but will be watching AHS:Asylum live next week. I’ve been waiting all summer for that premiere.

  29. Danielle says:

    Arrow is a permanent fixture now. I really enjoyed the storyline and the pilot had me interested from the first minute. Can’t wait to see how it all shapes up. Oh, and more shirtless Oliver is a plus!

  30. Carrie says:

    Yay for “Supernatural”, but I thought “Arrow” was very boring. “Nashville” was good.

  31. effie says:

    It’s too bad Nashville’s viewers dropped in the last half hour, because that means lots of people missed out on that beautiful Civil Wars song at the end, “If I Didn’t Know Better.” The actors did a great job singing it. I really liked the pilot and I plan to watch again next week.

  32. Mikaylah says:

    So happy for Arrow and Supernatural. They (along with Nikita) are the only CW shows I watch anymore.

  33. Kristina says:

    Glad to hear good ratings for CW, I liked Arrow and watch SN, so good news is good!

  34. GK says:

    Awesome news! Arrow was fantastic! Recommending it to all my mates!
    Supernatural’s premiere should have had those numbers, but I’ll take it. Good episode last night.
    Didn’t think it was my kind of show, but Nashville impressed me.
    Chicago Fire was very very average.
    I still like Modern Family. So, I’m happy with the numbers.

  35. robinepowell says:

    I watched Criminal Minds on Tuesday (thank you CTV), so it didn’t conflict with watching SVU. I also watched Dragon’s Den (CBC) and Arrow.

    Arrow has caught my interest, for now, we’ll see where it goes down the road. ;)

  36. AlbTrex says:

    Arrow is awesome!!!!!!!!!!

  37. Richard Nickell says:

    Just wathced Arrow and it was excellent. Didn’t see the ending coming. Nashville is only going to get better. Can’t waite to see what’s going to happen next.

  38. Natalie says:

    I was really REALLY impressed with Arrow. It was really raw and gritty and reminded me of a cross between the Jason Bourne movies and the Daniel Craig 007 movies…I loved it. I’m really glad it did so well!

  39. JUDE says:

    Personally I loved ARROW !! It has the dark, gritty feel of one of the darker, more psychotic Batman flicks.

    Smallville was a bit too goody-two-shoes for my taste. Enjoyed the lead character being a “bit stiff” with everyone but his little sister and beloved housekeeper (memories of whom kept him hanging on for five years of a survivalist lifestyle) 5 years can lower your people skills I would think…… besides being treated to an onboard show of his father committing murder and then suicide, in order to give him a better chance of survival, can make anyone appear a bit stunned.

    Quite obviously Oliver must have shared his wild island with a shipwrecked Russian sailor and a Chinese martial arts-trained castaway as well. Hence his new skills….. (it was an island off the Chinese mainland after all !! So I’m sure that they had seafood and rice at least) Loved that his kidnapped buddy was only playing dead, since you saw him open his eyes after Oliver felt for a pulse, he obviously saw Oliver’s self-defense mode kick in.

    So glad to see this paired with my much loved Supernatural. I want to see both shows earn great ratings like they did last night! Though it seems as if the same unimaginative, hypercritical crowd will try to pick ARROW apart the same way they do SPN. Me ? I’m a diehard escapist ! If you want reality… don’t watch shows that have comic book BIG heroes…… go watch REALITY TV and let us live in OUR little universe in peace……

  40. ChrisGa says:

    Gotta say a little shocked at Nashville’s opening ratings; ABC promoted the living hell out of it so I was thinking it was gonna open much stronger than it did. That said, still the best new show of the season in my book. As for Arrow, happy the CW scored a hit but the lead, despite being criminally gorgeous, is no Justin Hartley when it comes to acting or charisma(Katie Cassidy saved this one for me).

  41. CJ says:

    OMG Arrow was so great. Seriously did not expect that.

  42. tvdiva says:

    I usually do not get excited watching a CW show, but the Arrow premiere was exceptionally done. The stunts were great and the twist at the end of the hour was well done .Did not see that coming.

  43. Jean says:

    I am sorry i will never watch Arrow. Despite being strong, its a total smack in the face for Smallville fans and it;s universe. NASHVILLE was amazing. It had everything, music humor etc… I am so happy it did well for ABC and everyone should watch it. Anyone that was a fan of Smallville should not watch ARROW at all. Can’t wait for next week;s NASHVILLE.

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