2016-17 Sitcom Scorecard -- Sitcoms Are Still Viable After The Scripted Purge of the 2000's

Image result for american housewifeWritten Grateful Sitcoms Are Not Extinct by Bridger Cunningham

Ever notice show and network averages look much different than the weekly ratings reports, making the current season look like a dreadful loss?  That is because all of the "comprehensive lists" posted by Variety, Deadline, etc... all manage to add in the Live+7 DVR viewing figures.  For readers following TV Ratings Guide's weekly sitcom scorecards in season, noticeable increases run rampant.  In-season, The Big Bang Theory rested on a promising 3.10 average.  However, most of the figures match, save for FOX shoved past several NBC shows in the ratings.  In the same-day viewing during this season, ABC and CBS were close together, with NBC and FOX neck to neck much further down.  With L+7 figures, ABC and FOX are gripped closely together.  Either way, the sitcom averages went as follows -- CBS in 1st, ABC in 2nd, FOX in 3rd, and NBC in 4th.

Sitcoms in 2016-17 paled in performance compared with heydays in the 80's and 90's, yet were a drastic improvement over the Reality/Scripted Purge of the 2000's.  Outside of sitcoms, NBC was poised in 1st place, yet its sitcoms had room to rebuild.  The Good Place received a mild bump from The Voice, yet shadowed under Superstore.  NBC's strategy placed two sitcoms on Thursdays to reclaim its former glory of Must-See-TV, as well as placing new fares with smaller orders in the Tuesday post-voice timeslot.  The results were softer than Superstore's ride in this lead-in the season before, yet critical acclaim landed Great News and Trial by Jury in renewed territory.  The Good Place performed stronger than its successor, Powerless, which lodged the lowest sitcom rating for a single week among the 4 networks in a single evening at 0.5.

FOX sitcoms inflated their Sunday numbers with Football overruns, yet receded to abysmal territory after Superbowl LI.  The Mick made a critical breakthrough, as well as being the season's leading candidate for Football promotion.  The Mick was the only freshman pilot to return, as Son of Zorn and Making History proved too weak to perform.  Last Man on Earth and Brooklyn 99 registered low deliveries, yet critical acclaim and timeslot endurance branded them a welcom fit in FOX's crown.  New Girl performed to standard and received a final season sendoff, Bob's Burgers covered that ugly 7:30 Sunday timeslot, and Family Guy and Simpsons were the picks of the FOX litter.

Crazy mothers, dopey fathers and 2-3 children proved to be a winning formula for ABC.  Modern Family experienced significant erosion in the spring, yet performs at a gold standard after 8 seasons.  The Goldbergs carried its viewers to its new Wednesday 8pm timeslot, and freshman Speechless performed respectable in its old hole.  Black-ish performed on its own independent beat and garnered critical acclaim, and The Middle survived a risky move to Tuesday at 8pm, reviving a problematic evening for the network.  Trailing on Frankie Heck's insanity was Katie Otto's trolling on newfoud hit American Housewife.  Fresh Off The Boat's performance was ho-hum, yet its durability during soft spring ratings treated ABC well.  The Tuesday 9:30pm timeslot sported failures The Real O'Neal's and Imaginary Mary, Dr. Ken flatlined on Fridays, and a shocking felling ax killed last Man Standing after 6 seasons, ending 5-years of Friday single-cam fares.

Like LMS, an outcry was heard when CBS served 2 Broke Girls a pinkslip after 6 seasons.  The outsourced fare performed well, no matter which of the 10 timeslots CBS jammed it into during its run.  Elsewhere, it was the same rinse and repeat scheduling square dance for the Tiffany Network.  TBBT landed on Mondays in the fall, then moved to Thursdays.  It launched two new pilts in Kevin Can Wait and The Great Indoors.  KCW utilized its lead-in to become the 2nd-strongest sitcom, and TGI collected ratings like a welfare recipient leaching off the system.  Few cried when the network said no thanks to trite generational humor.  Mom was an anomaly as it not only bested the TBBT lead-out on several occasions, but was also the only show to increase during the dreadful spring season.  Elsewhere, a forgettable run-of-the-mill sitcom roster.

Source -- http://deadline.com/2017/05/2016-2017-tv-season-ratings-series-rankings-list-1202102340/

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