Bravo Performance/Schedule Analysis - June 2009 - Broadcasting & Cable

Bravo Performance/Schedule Analysis - June 2009

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PERFORMANCE/SCHEDULE ANALYSIS

(Updated as of August 2, 2009)

CURRENT AND SIGNATURE PROGRAMS:

FASHION SHOW(REALITY)
Hosted by Isaac Mizrahi and Kelly Rowland, follows professional designers as they strive to make their mark in the world of fashion and compete for a chance to have their designs sold for the mass retail market.
Status: Premiere Date: May 7th at 10pm.


NEW YORK CITY PREP (DOCU/REALITY)
A docu-series that follows a clique of six real-life Blair Waldorfs  living it up on New York's Upper East Side.

REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY

The latest in the HOUSEWIVESfranchise follows five affluent Garden State housewives through their daily lives. Unlike previous series (Orange County, New York City) some of these women know one another well.

TOP CHEF MASTERS (REALITY)
A spinoff of Bravo's tentpole competition series where the tables will turn on TOP CHEF'S roster of celebrity gastronomes, as kitchen artists like Wylie Dufresne and Anita Lo will compete for the eponymous title and $100,000 to be donated to a charity of their choice.


JUNE 2009 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE


TOP PRIMETIME SHOWS:

NYC PREP, REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ORANGE COUNTY, FASHION SHOW, REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY, TOP CHEF MASTERS

SCHEDULING STRATEGIES:

This is a female-leaning network, but plenty of men show up, too. As much as any network in cable, Bravo has a "feel." It's bright, highly energetic and exudes an urban, upscale, sassy sensibility. The network has kept that vibe from becoming snobbish or off-putting with a winking admission that this is all just good, light, entertaining fun -- and everyone's invited.

The schedule balances original series with Hollywood movies and Law & Order: Criminal Intent, an off-broadcast acquisition. Everything on the network is an hourlong except for movie blocks. In June there were two of these: all of primetime on Friday night and on Saturday, two hours following a REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY at 8pm.

In June the schedule was dominated by REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY(from here on referred to as HOUSEWIVES) and there were only four other non-movie titles in the entire schedule. Here they are, with the number of primetime hours per week in parentheses: HOUSEWIVES (8), TOP CHEF MASTERS (3), KATHY GRIFFITH: MY LIFE ON THE D LIST (2), LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT (2) and FASHION SHOW (1).


UPCOMING PREMIERES:

** August 17 - FLIPPING OUT - Season 3
** August 25 - RACHEL ZOE PROJECT - Season 2

** August 26 - TOP CHEF LAS VEGAS

** September 16 - LAUNCH MY LINE - New


MAY 2009 MONTHLY PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:

May 2008 vs. May 2009:

Yearly % change*       H'hold        M25-54     F25-54    P25-54
Monday 8-11pm            16%         -11%        22%       4%
Tuesday 8-11pm           58%           82%      189%    152%
Wednesday 8-11pm      -36%          -51%       -41%    -43%                       
Thursday 8-11pm          59%          -14%        67%     41%
Friday 8-11pm             -15%             5%       -10%      -5%             
Saturday 8-11pm          25%           10%         48%     33%
Sunday 8-11pm             -2%            0%           7%       0%

MTWTFSS 8-11pm       21%        -5%         36%     21%

*The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample

It was another strong month for Bravo. They were ahead by double digits month-to-month (HH 13%) and year-to-year (HH 21%). There's a little0 icing for this cake, too. Their audience got just a little younger; by 3% compared to May and by 4% since June of last year.

The big story remains REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY (referred to from here on as HOUSEWIVES), which had Tuesday night all to itself with a three hour stack and ran on four additional nights for a total of eight hours per week. The finale on June 16th topped previous final eps in the franchise and won the night. A great indicator of this series' appeal: The all-HOUSEWIVES stack on Tuesday was up HH 37% over last month. Older men and older women were both up HH 41%.

Would getting a lead-in from such a juggernaut be a blessing or a curse? FASHION SHOW, following a two hour HOUSEWIVES can hold its head high. While it only held on to to its lead once, the drops on subsequent weeks were not precipitous and they trended well above average. These two shows were a good match in sensibility. It'll be fun to see if FASHION SHOW is paired with some Ladies Of The Franchise again.

And, a tip of the funny white kitchen hat to TOP CHEF and TOP CHEF MASTERS. They took over what had been a three hour Wednesday night HOUSEWIVES stack in May and the night actually gained by a couple HH percentage points. TOP CHEF MASTERS was decisively stronger than its commoner forebear. The two TOP CHEF series are, by the way, hits in the blogosphere -- a non-network executives' substitute for focus groups and dial tests. They gets praise, even adoration, for stiff competition in a collegial atmosphere where passion for food and admiration of fellow foodies trumps victory-quest histrionics. The original series has won a James Beard award, for Heaven's sake.

One final trend worth noting this month: Acquired programming (Movies and LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT) seemed like ballast, holding down a schedule that wanted to fly. In May, they had been heroes. A scheduler's life is not an easy one.

Sunday night was plain weird. Here, for the whole month, HOUSEWIVES episodes got plunked in at 9pm between the 8pm and 10pm episodes of LAW & ORDER: CSI. This month's "Cable Flowbie Award" goes to the juxtaposition mentioned above: HOUSEWIVES-FASHION SHOW. Nice. Thats flow. The "Cable Coolie Dam Prize" for anti-flow is awarded to the Sunday night HOUSEWIVES-Between-LAW & ORDER sandwich. This accomplished the impossible: some horrible numbers for heretofore unblemished HOUSEWIVES episodes.

PROGRAM ACQUISITIONS:


None announced


PROGRAM RENEWALS:

KATHY GRIFFIN: MY LIFE ON THE D-LIST (season #5) 
FLIPPING OUT (8/09)
MILLION DOLLAR LISTING (season #3)
THE RACHEL ZOE PROJECT (8/09)
TABITHA'S TAKEOVER SALON (season #2)
THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ATLANTA (season #2)
THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ORANGE COUNTY (season #5)
SHEAR GENIUS (Season 3)
INSIDE THE ACTOR'S STUDIO (season #15)
TOP CHEF (season #6)
REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW YORK - Season 3 (2010)

PROGRAM CANCELLATIONS:

None announced.

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