Jess's Take: Freeform's Woes, Plus MTV Loses to Deprioritized VH1

Hello folks! Welcome to a long overdue installment of Jess's Take. The Monday cable ratings are out, and I have plenty to say about what goes on in cable.

Just How Low Can Freeform Go?
Last night, Shadowhunters scored a 0.25 and Stitchers scored a 0.14 in the adults 18-49 demographic. Considering this, Shadowhunters is a weak lead-in. While most of Freeform's lower tier shows are scoring in the 0.1 range, let this fact sink in. The network will be losing Pretty Little Liars, their highest rated show.

I can say this: the prognosis for this "Becomer" network is not looking good. Even if the focus is turned to streaming, a 0.1 or less is not even going to cut it. But with Beyond already renewed, how in the world would Freeform cut ties with its lower tier? I just don't see a clear way out of the ratings abyss.

MTV vs. VH1: Some Ratings Data
Here is some ratings data from both last night's ratings from VH1 and MTV.

Love and Hip Hop: Atlanta - 1.30
Basketball Wives - 0.93
Daytime Divas - 0.39

Teen Mom - 0.75
My Super Sweet 16 - 0.28
Promposal - 0.15

It looks like VH1 is the clear winner in last night's cable ratings. But in the context of this, how in the world can a deprioritized network win over one of Viacom's core six networks? 

Earlier this year, Viacom CEO Bob Bakish named MTV as one of the six core networks along with BET, Comedy Central, Nick, Nick Jr., and Spike TV (which will be renamed the Paramount Network come January). As a result, networks like CMT, VH1, and TVLand were deprioritized. Clearly, the results are showing. 

For MTV, here's the simple fact. When you are losing to VH1, you definitely need to rethink your programming choices. It's not even going to bode well for the upcoming Throwdown Thursdays lineup. The jury is still out on how Wild 'n Out will do, but based on the ratings of the last three episodes of season 8 (0.19, 0.17, 0.16), I think that it will pull 0.1-0.2 ratings, especially since it moved to 11pm. 11pm may have worked fine on MTV2 for the Nick Cannon hosted show, but it's a death sentence on MTV. We'll see what happens. 

Stay tuned for more installments of Jess's Take in the coming weeks and check out more TV Ratings Guide articles for more in-depth analysis, ratings reports, and more! 

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