Original series dominate truTV's primetime schedule. One a given night, a single original series will tend to run in a solid block throughout primetime. There's a heavy reliance on blue collar reality (HARDCORE PAWN, OPERATION REPO, etc), while comedic video clip properties and a handful of other series fill out the remainder of the schedule.
As new series are introduced to the schedule, the network create a few generic slots across the week for repeats. Additional exhibitions in short bursts of 2-4 weeks give their new titles a chance to gain recognition with the casual viewer. When a series does break out, like OPERATION REPO, they move it into a regular timeslot.
With the transition from court TV to truTv at the beginning of 2008, the crime and investigation focus was replaced with a broader, non-fiction/reality mix of programs. Since its rebranding, truTV's has pursued reality programming with a special focus on repo and pawning.
MAY 2012 PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:
Live Primetime Ratings Comparison May 2012 vs. May 2011 (% Change)
Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample
May was a solid month for truTV from both a monthly and yearly standpoint. While there were no explosive upswings in the ratings, there was also not a single drop in any key demo overall.
HARDCORE PAWN, once again reigned supreme for the network. Even with a total of 40 telecasts (including an abundance of reruns) the show was the untouchable leader for the month. In May, PAWN continued with its sixth season and attracted droves of its usual male audience aged 18-49 and 25-54. Though the show was down 12% from last month, Tuesdays (which aired new PAWN eps) remained the most watched night for the network.
SOUTH BEACH TOW, which nabbed the second spot, enjoyed a particularly strong month. TOW was up 8% from last month and was one of the two shows that managed to crack PAWN’s dominance of the top 20 telecasts. All four of TOW’s May premiere episodes ranked among the network’s top 20 telecasts for the month.
The strength of TOW caused primetime Wednesdays to leap 18% in the ratings in both monthly and yearly numbers. While the yearly change isn’t that impressive (it was competing against reruns of OPERATION REPO) the show vastly outperformed its own ratings compared to April.
Though IMPRACTICAL JOKERS was down from the month before, the reality prank show enjoyed a solid May. JOKERS was the third most watched program for the network, despite only airing a single new telecast. The strength of the new show helped make Thursdays the second biggest night among men aged 18-49 and 25-54. WORLD’S DUMBEST also featured on Thursday nights, and experienced a slight ratings downturn in the monthly and yearly numbers. Nevertheless, DUMBEST did fare better than similar show TOP 20 MOST SHOCKING. SHOCKING suffered from a general disinterest among every demographic.
Fridays, which featured a solid block of BAIT CAR, was one of the lowest rated nights among men 18-49 and 25-54. The show featured three new episodes over the course of the month and failed to gain much traction with viewers.
WIENERS CIRCLE – which underperforms even when airing new episodes – was confined to reruns in May. Unsurprisingly, the series was the least watched program for truTV.