TBS Analysis

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Monday night starts the week with a FAMILY GUY stack, and Tuesday follows with a stack of THE BIG BANG THEORY. The two programs mix it up on Wednesday and Thursday nights with FAMILY GUY leading into THE BIG BANG THEORY, which is in place at 10:30 to give CONAN the biggest lead-in possible. Friday through Sunday were all about movies on TBS for years, but now Tyler Perry programming brings women and African-American viewers to the network on Fridays, after getting the boot from its long-standing home on Wednesday nights. THE BIG BANG THEORY has staked a claim to yet another night – Saturday – where it runs from 8PM to 10PM each week. Original hour-long comedies ran on Thursday nights this summer, but the newest show, WEDDING BAND, airs on Saturday nights at 10.


LIVE + SAME DAY PRIMETIME RATINGS COMPARISON November 2012 vs. November 2011 (% Change)




Monday 8-11pm




Tuesday 8-11pm




Wednesday 8-11pm




Thursday 8-11pm




Friday 8-11pm




Saturday 8-11pm




Sunday 8-11pm




MTWTFSS 8-11pm




Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample

NOVEMBER 2012: TBS’ bottom line numbers look very much like last year’s bottom line numbers. Target 18-49 demo ratings barely moved, coming in at the same number or one percentage point off. Median age was up 8%, and this was reflected in the adult 25-54 numbers, which edged up by 11% for men and 7% for women.

THE BIG BANG THEORY remains the single biggest force on the line-up, accounting for 40% of the primetime programming and more than 50% of the ratings points. THE BIG BANG THEORY is the also the biggest reason for the increased age of the audience. Ratings for the show are holding nicely, despite the uber-presence on the schedule. TBS continues to use the program to lead into all of its biggest properties, particularly CONAN. This month it was scheduled as a two-hour block on Saturdays to lead into TBS’ newest original comedy, WEDDING BAND.

WEDDING BAND pulled decent numbers for the month, with its total program average ranking fourth on households and sixth on adults 18-49. But a closer look reveals some cracks.  The first bad sign was the fact that TBS decided to air it on a Saturday night. At 10:00PM. The second was the declining numbers with each successive week. From premiere night to the third airing it dropped 44% of its audience and it was dropping about half of its BIG BANG lead in through-out the run.

FAMILY GUY is still a big component of the primetime line-up with 11 airings per week. It dominates Monday nights and gives THE BIG BANG THEORY some relief on Wednesdays and Thursdays. It no longer produces the largest male numbers on the line-up, but it comes in second to BANG and with an audience that is 60% male, it holds the strongest male skew. After showing some signs of decline earlier in the year, it seems to be bouncing back, growing core men 18-49 by 14% vs. last year’s ratings.

FOR BETTER OR WORSE is not faring as well on Friday nights. Ratings are off by 8% vs. last month and by 77% vs. last year (although there are more encores airing this year). With Tyler Perry signing an exclusive development deal with OWN and his programming pushed to low-rated Friday nights, it doesn’t look like FOR BETTER OR WORSE or other Tyler Perry fare will be with TBS in the long term.

Movies, particularly holiday themed theatricals and annual specials were strong this month. Highlights were The Wizard of Oz, Fred Claus and The Grinch.