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"Blacklist," "Agents," "Goldbergs," open strong here; "Lucky 7" DOA

By Alan Pergament

It is only four days into the new TV season officially, but the networks are already proclaiming victory for new shows.

Western New York has generally gone along with national trends, though the older audience here tends to favor long-running CBS shows.

For example, WNYers predictably turned to "NCIS" (16.8) on CBS affiliate Channel 4 over ABC's  heavily-promoted "“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D" (7.1) on Channel 7 in the battle of scripted series at 8 p.m. Tuesday.  

But that is household ratings and the networks are looking for the age 18-49 demographic that turned to ABC’s "Agents" nationally. "NCIS" is more popular with older viewers.

ABC already is calling "Agents" a hit, but determining whether that show is a success will be whether viewers will come back next week in at least the same numbers.

Interestingly, "Agents" helped the funny 9 p.m. comedy "The Goldbergs" to a promising 7.5 rating on Channel 7, which was well above the routine "Trophy Wife" (5.1) which followed it. The predictable 10
p.m. lottery drama, "Lucky 7," had a 2.4 rating on Channel 7, which was
consistent with how badly it did nationally. One more rating like that and it might
be out of luck and off the schedule.

The anemic Tuesday Fox comedy from Seth MacFarlane, "Dads" (2.5) did poorly in its second episode. The critically-acclaimed "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (3.0) with Andy Samberg that follows it didn’t do much better but if those figures  hold Fox should flip-flop them soon.

Over at NBC, the Emmy-winning, reality show "The Voice" (10.2) and sophomore series "Chicago Fire" (8.5) had strong Wednesday showings on Channel 2 and they usually do well in key demographics as well.

In the first round of the season's top one-on-one time slot battle, NBC's "The Blacklist" (9.4) with James Spader of "Boston Legal" on Channel 2 decisively defeated CBS' "Hostages" (6.1) with Dylan McDermott of "The Practice" on Channel 4 in Buffalo Monday night, which was the first official night of the new broadcast TV season. ABC's aging "Castle" (6.9) on Channel 7 out-rated "Hostages" as well.

Of course, this being the age of DVRs and On Demand, the figures could get much closer after secondary viewing is added. Nationally, "Castle" was the most-watched 10 p.m. Monday show, but
"The Blacklist" was a close second and won the 18-49 demographic decisively and that's what counts the most.

In other Buffalo ratings news Monday, the second episode of Fox’s very cool "Sleepy Hollow" (6.8) on Channel 29 still did very well opposite two popular reality series in ABC’s "Dancing with the Stars" (10.9) on Channel 7 and NBC’s "The Voice" (8.8) on Channel  2. And “Sleepy” got strong
national demographics. One more week like that and "Sleepy" will deserve to be called a hit. 

Ichabod Crane beat the premiere of the new CBS comedy "Mom" (5.5) on Channel 4, which isn't good news for stars Anna Faris and Allison Janney. By the way, Buffalo's Nick Bakay was listed in the closing credits as the voice of Mom in voiceovers, though I don't actually remember any of them. Bakay also is on the writing staff of the new series.


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