NBC’s struggling serial drama, The Event, returns tonight after 13 weeks away. The network has been giving the series some nice promotion and is bringing it back with a two back-to-back episodes. Will that be enough?
The Event had a solid debut back in September with a 3.6 rating in the 18-49 demographic and 10.88 million viewers. Unfortunately, it fell nearly 20% in week two and another 17% in week three. The ratings kept falling until they seemed to even off at a 1.7 rating and about 5.5 million viewers. That’s a far cry from the promise that the series once held.
NBC put the ailing series on hiatus at the end of November, promising a big relaunch in late February. That return was later bumped to tonight to make room for The Cape, another casualty of the timeslot.
Networks have tried putting serial dramas on long hiatuses in the past and they just don’t work out. Many viewers assume that a series like The Event has already been cancelled, that they won’t remember what was going on, or have gotten into the habit of watching other shows. Whatever the reason, a show like The Event has to fight to get the viewers who were watching pre-hiatus to return, never mind attracting new ones.
Sadly, it seems that it will take a ratings miracle to save The Event at this point and NBC certainly hasn’t shown a lot of confidence in getting new people to give the show a try. More than half of the audience who were interested enough to watch the premiere, left over the course of the first 10 episodes. Of those who did stick around, it’s reasonable to expect that a sizable percentage have moved on after 13 weeks.
If you check our season rankings to date, you’ll see that The Event is currently in the middle of the pack with a 2.2 rating and 6.86 million. If the new episodes can attract the same number of pre-hiatus viewers, it will slowly sink lower down the list. If The Event starts doing Cape-like numbers (a 1.2 in the demo), it’ll fall much quicker.
Either way, unless the ratings turnaround or NBC has no faith in its new pilots, it’s very doubtful that The Event will be coming back for season two.
What do you think? Will you be watching The Event? What could NBC do to save this series or is it too late already? Is it worth saving?
Image courtesy NBC.