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Sigourney Weaver’s Political Animals Premieres to Modest Ratings
Things don’t look too great for Political Animals, the newest addition to USA Networks Sunday lineup. It had its series premiere this past weekend and it debuted with what I would say are modest numbers for a cable network. The show didn’t do great, but it didn’t do terribly either, which in my opinion is the worst position it could be in as a freshman series. While there are shows out there that actually managed to build their audiences, the norm for a series is a steady decline. No show stays strong number-wise forever – even the popular ones – and to start low means it won’t take as long to reach too low.
According to Deadline, Political Animals amassed 2.6 million viewers for its first episode. Of that number, 675,000 were adults ages 18-49, and 834,000 were 25-54. USA obviously wants to attract as many viewers as possible so they also delivered the show to viewers using Hulu and iTunes, as well as making it readily available of USANetwork.com. That’s putting a lot of faith in platforms advertisers don’t take into account. If Political Animals wants to survive to see a second season, it needs to draw a larger audience that watches the show on their televisions; otherwise that 2.6 million is going to drop week after week until cancellation.
I know I sound entirely negative toward Political Animals, but that is simply the reality of things. Fewer and fewer people are watching TV on TV these days, and it’s causing a drop in the ratings of most shows. For some the loss is gradual, almost unnoticeable, while for others it’s instantaneous. We won’t know until its second episode airs which of those it will be for Political Animals, or even if it will drop at all. It could still rise. That is always a possibility. It’s just one that I’ve come to see as very likely.