Themed nights are the order of the day, filled with short series, long series, and single hours in between. There is a fairly large spread among the average ages of the audience night to night. While there use to be an extremely heavy reliance on acquisition HOW IT'S MADE, in recent months, Science has reduced the amount of airings by a significant number, opening the schedule to more original series.
AUGUST 2012 PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:
Live + SD Primetime Ratings Comparison / August 2012 vs. August 2011 (% Change)
Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample
What used to be a network that relied nearly primarily on re-airings of HOW IT'S MADE has developed into a network with a full slate of original series in various genres and high-profile specials. This paid off well for the network in August, which was a solid month for Science, up 27% in overall HH viewers and saw similar increases in key younger demographics.
Monday nights in August featured a variety of stacked episodes of space-themed programming. In August, airings of DEEP SPACE MARVELS, MARS RISING, HOW THE UNIVERSE WORKS, and WHEN EARTH ERUPTS catapulted the HH ratings up 36% compared to August 2011. A special on 8/6 about the landing of the Mars rover Curiosity, scored numbers that doubled average.
Tuesdays in August also saw year-to-year growth in overall HH ratings, as well as in the key younger demographics. The night had somewhat of a bizarre schedule - everything from marathons of HOW DO THEY DO IT and HOW IT'S MADE, to a night featuring carnivorous and ferocious insects, to a Saturn-themed night was on the agenda for the month. While most programs hovered around average, the marathon of HOW IT'S MADE brought in above-average viewers.
Thought-provoking originals were on the agenda for Wednesday nights in August. DARK MATTERS: TWISTED BUT TRUE, HOW THE UNIVERSE WORKS, and THROUGH THE WORMHOLE all helped drive the night up 50% compared to a year ago. Nearly every airing scored above average numbers, and the night is the strongest of the week for Science. These carefully written-and-researched programs are clearly Science's bread-and-butter and the die-hard knowledge-seeker audience is responding well to these shows.
Thursday nights are anchored by stacked episodes of HOW IT'S MADE and HOW DO THEY DO IT, which continue to score average to above-average numbers for Science. The night is up 33% compared to August of last year. While there is a heavy rotation of both shows in Science's primetime lineup, the audience is there: HOW IT'S MADE is up 25% overall compared to last year, and HOW DO THEY DO IT saw an increase of 31% - and more among the key younger male demographics.
Friday's numbers saw a year-to-year jump of 14%, with a variety of programming choices and not much of a schedule to discern.
Saturdays in August were anchored by ODDITIES and DARK MATTERS: TWISTED BUT TRUE. Overall, the night was up 17% but was flat among key demographics. Both ODDITIES and DARK MATTERS struggled a bit this month, with most airings failing to hit average.
Sunday night's primetime lineup saw a small decrease in overall viewers. A variety of stacked episodes anchored the schedule in August. Top performing was BIBLICAL MYSTERIES EXPLAINED and JESUS CONSPIRACIES on 8/19.