In what has to be distressing news for the network, Deadline reported on Feb. 21 that NBC falls to fifth place in the ratings behind the other major networks, as well as Univision, for the month of February.
This was during the very important early year sweeps period, where all networks vie for the big win. NBC actually won the sweeps period in November 2012, thanks to shows like "Revolution" and "The Voice." However, this month, NBC averaged a crushing low 1.2 rating in the 18-49 year demographic that is so important to advertisers. Even Univision brought in a 1.5 rating in that demo.
Three of the shows that helped them win last November were not on the air in February. NFL football has ended, "The Voice" ended it season, and "Revolution" doesn't return from the midseason break until March.
CBS has the best rating for the month in the key demographic, with a 4.9, thanks mostly to the Super Bowl and Grammy Awards. FOX is in second place with a 2.0, while ABC sits in third with a 1.7 rating.
NBC's hopeful returning series "Smash" has been a disappointment, dropping in ratings from last season, while "The New Normal" and "Go On" have dropped as well. The second episode of "Smash" this season scored a 0.9 rating. Comparatively, "The Big Bang Theory" scored a 5.5 rating.
"The Voice" and "Revolution" both return in March, so while NBC falls to fifth place this month, it might just be temporary.
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Shawn S. Lealos is a member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle, the professional film critics’ organization of Oklahoma. He is also working on a book about the Stephen King dollar babies called “Dollar Deal.” To read more of his writing, visit shawnlealos.net.