HBO Series Debuts Draw Far Fewer Viewers - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 1 Old 01-12-2005, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Dismal Debuts for HBO's 'Carnivale,' 'Unscripted'
(zap2it.com)--"Sex and the City" is gone and new seasons of "Six Feet Under" and "The Sopranos" are a long way off and HBO's ratings are beginning to show a little wear-and-tear. Sunday night's (Jan. 9) season premiere of "Carnivale" and the series premiere of "Unscripted" got off to weak starts for the premium cable giant.

The mystical Dust Bowl drama premiered at 9 p.m. ET to only 1.8 million viewers. The Sept. 2003 first season premiere of "Carnivale" drew 5.3 million viewers. To be fair, the show's series premiere followed an episode of "Sex and the City" and wasn't expected to anchor the night. In addition, since that time, HBO has changed its viewer measurement standards, generally lowering numbers for its primary channel.

As tepid as the ratings for "Carnivale" were, the largely improvised Hollywood comedy "Unscripted" debuted to only 814,000 viewers at 10 p.m., according to the industry trades. A second episode of "Unscripted" dipped even further, pulling in only 726,000. "K Street," a political dramedy from "Unscripted" producers Steven Soderbergh and George Clooney, debuted after the 2003 "Carnivale" premiere and hooked 3.1 million, by far the largest audience in its short run.

As a better point of comparison, the premiere of this summer's similarly themed "Entourage" drew a somewhat disappointing 1.89 million viewers in July.

Other cable networks had better starts to their week. VH1's reality series "The Surreal Life" drew 2.3 million viewers for its Sunday premiere, making it the network's highest rated program in four years and propelling the first episode of "Strange Love" to the network's highest ever premiere ratings. Over on Lifetime, the Monday screening of the Debra Winger telefilm "Dawn Anna" drew a solid 4.4 million viewers.

http://tv.zap2it.com/tveditorial/tve_main/1,1002,271|92897|1|,00.html
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