FOX’s much-hyped preview of Glee aired in a coveted position, following the second-to-last American Idol of the season. In that plum timeslot, how well did Glee perform do? Will the musical comedy stick around?
Glee follows the administrators and the members of a formerly top show choir at a fictional Ohio high school. A young teacher (Broadway’s Matthew Morrison) offers to take over leading the group to try to return them to their former glory. Other castmembers include Jayma Mays, Chris Colfer, Amber Riley, Kevin McHale, Jenna Ushkowitz, Lea Michele, Cory Monteith, Dianna Agron, Mark Salling, Jessalyn Gilsig, and Jane Lynch.
The series debuted to an average of 9.6 million viewers with a 3.9 rating among adults 18-49. Those numbers sound okay on their own but, when you dig deeper, it’s a different tune. The show’s American Idol lead-in attracted 23.8 million viewers with an 8.6 rating in the demo. About half as many people tuned in to watch Glee and then, by the second half hour, another three million tuned out.
FOX execs have to be disappointed considering the great Idol lead-in and all of the promotion that the network has poured into it. The show has already secured a spot on FOX’s Fall schedule as the network’s only new drama. It’ll definitely be back. But, if the debut is any indication of the show’s future, you have to wonder, for how long?
According to FOX spokesperson Joe Earley, the network is pleased with the show’s average performance. He tells the Hollywood Reporter, “The measurement for success last night was never about the demo rating… We’re definitely happy with the way Glee performed, we knew how tough the competition was going to be, last night was a marketing experiment and we got almost 10 million people to see it, which is fantastic. We could work all summer long marketing the show and not get those many people, and certainly not in the fall.”
So, what do you think? Worth keeping or should it be cancelled?
Image courtesy FOX.