Little Ratings Love for HBO’s Tell Me You Love Me

Premiere of Premium Network’s Relationship Drama Series Draws Just 910K Viewers

HBO's Tell Me You Love Mewas off to a slow start Sunday night. The relationship drama's series premiere drew just 910,000 viewers at 9 p.m.

The show didn't have the benefit of a Sopranoslead-in, like HBO's other recent originals, including John from Cincinnatiand Big Love, but the number is still not great for the pay cable network.

By comparison, John, which HBO recently canceled after one season, drew more viewers (987,000) to its least-watched episode of the season than Tell Me's premiere. HBO premieres are typically series' most-viewed episode, so this doesn't bode well for the new show.

In addition to its lack of a lead-in, Tell Me also debuted on a competitive night, with rivals including NBC's premiere of Sunday Night Football and MTV's 2007 Video Music Awards, the latter of which was up 23% over last year to an average of 7.1 million viewers from 9 p.m.-11 p.m.

HBO, with a business model that obviously differs from those of ad-supported cable networks, also prefers to cite series' ratings as a cume of all of their plays throughout the week. Following, it remains to be seen how many more people might tune in to Tell Me later this week and via HBO On Demand.

HBO premiered the sixth season of Curb Your Enthusiasmafter Tell Me Sunday to 1.2 million total viewers at 10 p.m., on par with its season-five average. Following that at 10:30 p.m., the network's Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraqdocumentary about Iraq veterans drew 901,000 viewers.