Despite the disappointing press reviews, the US premiere of Kath and Kim took good numbers in the US.
It managed 7.5m viewers, which, while landing third in its timeslot behind Survivor and Ugly Betty enjoyed strong growth for the NBC timeslot.
In the US total numbers are not the same litmus test of ‘hit or miss’ as in Australia. NBC will look to compare how Kath and Kim fared in overall share and demographics. Kath & Kim came second in its slot with a 3.2 rating in 18-49. Survivor was first with a 4.6. Ugly Betty was third with a 2.7, the baseball 4th with a 2.0 and Smallville last with a 1.6.
Kath & Kim was up 3% on a new My Name is Earl in the same timeslot last week and up 7% on new 30 Rock in the same timeslot last year. That’s enough to keep NBC smiling so far.
By contrast Survivor was down 2% on its new episode year on year, while Betty down a massive 27% on a new episode a year ago, baseball was down 23% on a new 5th Grader last year for Fox. Smallville was down 20% on a new episode last year on CW.
That leaves Kath and Kim as the only show to grow the timeslot for any network, up 7% for NBC when most other networks were down 20% or so year on year.
By comparison, Grey’s Anatomy was down a massive 30% on its ep last year.
The overall viewers for the 8.30 timeslot were: Survivor (14.1million) Betty (8.6m) Kath & Kim (7.5m) baseball (6.5m) and Smallville (4.2m). All figures are “Live plus same day” which means live viewing and delayed DVR viewing up to midnight last night (same day of telecast).
An NBC insider told TV Tonight: “Kath and Kim overperformed (our expectations)! Which is always really nice! I think the estimate was a 2.2 or something so it was a great surprise!”