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The Jay Leno Show: Big Premiere Ratings; Cancel or Keep It?

The Jay Leno ShowIn one of the riskiest strategies in television history, NBC has scheduled The Jay Leno Show to run five nights a week. The other networks have publicly scoffed at the plan but they’re also waiting to see if it’s a success. If the show pulls in big ratings over the long haul, you can just bet the other networks will try something similar.

As expected, last night’s premiere of The Jay Leno Show attracted some very hefty numbers. Approximately 17.66 million viewers tuned in with a 5.1/13 rating/share among the 18-49 demographic. That’s over 13 million more people than were watching an edition of Dateline a year earlier.

After a Summer of build-up and hype, these ratings aren’t a surprise. In addition to peaking viewers’ curiosity, NBC carefully placed the debut in the plum spot behind a two-hour edition of America’s Got Talent. They also took care to introduce Jay Leno before the other networks debut their new season.

Should The Jay Leno Show be cancelled?

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The real test of course will be to see how Jay Leno performs over time.

Naturally, NBC hasn’t said how low the numbers have to go before they start to make changes. But, considering that the program is cheaper to produce than most other primetime fare, they may be happy with third place with occasional bumps in viewership. If the ratings go too low, the network would likely try running the show just a few times a week.

As to the show’s content, the reviews have been middle-of-the-road at best. As he was on The Tonight Show, Leno is very affable and his comedy is likely only to offend politicians and crazed celebrities. It’s safe, non-challenging programming and that may be just what people want at that hour of the night. We’ll have to wait and see.

What do you think? Did you or will you watch? Would you make a point to watch it over some other show? Will it reduce the size of The Tonight Show audience?

 

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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Jami November 30, 2009 at 11:57 am

CANCEL IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IT’S THE WORST SHOW EVER! Please bring back dateline and law&order to their right times. I really hate this show. HATE IT.

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Byron Wilson November 6, 2009 at 5:39 pm

Stupid Idea, Take the number one guy at late night, put him on Prime Time to get killed. Then have the number 4 guy in Late Night Conan and have him host the number one late night show. Anyone involved with that decision should be fired! If Conan was loosing against Craig Ferguson why in hell would you think he could beat Letterman. Why would Conan and Leno agree to these moves career suicide! At least they both have the bank accounts to retire once they are both given the boot next year.

Most likely scenario Leno will get the Tonight Show back next year which sucks , I hate Leno, low talent looser who steals bits. Conan will be left out to dry who I like, but how can he be that stupid to take that job!

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Anonymous November 3, 2009 at 11:33 pm

CANCEL!

BRING BACK

LIFE
KINGS
AND KEEP TRAUMA!!

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Anonymous October 29, 2009 at 4:11 pm

this jay leno show sucks ass its the same
show all over again

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maureen grover October 26, 2009 at 7:50 pm

WATCHING YOUR OCTOBER 26TH SHOW……A COMMENT WAS MADE ABOUT LEGALIZING MARIJUANA……
WOULD YOU WANT THE FOLLOWING PEOPLE HIGH ON MARIJUANA WHEN IT COMES TO YOUR OR YOUR FAMILIES LIFE??

–CRUISE LINE CAPTAIN
–HOW ABOUT A PILOT
–TAXI/LIMO DRIVER
–HOW ABOUT YOUR SURGEON??????

THINK ABOUT IT………(IF YOU’RE NOT TOO STONED)……..LOL

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Amber October 26, 2009 at 3:19 pm

Please, please, please CANCEL the show and put SVU back into a 9pm(cst) timeslot on Tuesdays!!

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Paul October 20, 2009 at 11:20 am

Leave jay and also bring back the unit

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Evelyn October 5, 2009 at 7:00 pm

CANCEL shows like Las Vegas and keep junk like Lenno!!!! Give me a break NBC.

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Laura September 29, 2009 at 8:08 pm

The only thing worse than the show is the presence of continuous advertising on NBC of all things Leno, even being presented on local programming in Seattle. That alone would drive anyone away. Cancel.

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Anonymous September 29, 2009 at 8:17 am

CANCELLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!

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Robert September 25, 2009 at 9:14 am

I say we should keep the show on…
He’s doing a good job and he always makes me laugh =)
But i would like to see more jay walking skits

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Scotty September 21, 2009 at 12:46 am

Cancel it and bring back Kings. Now that show was something new that I could watch not Jay at 10pm.

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rholdy excellent September 17, 2009 at 9:03 am

canceld it and replace it with the game

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H.A. Carter September 17, 2009 at 7:45 am

Nothing new, same old show minus the desk. Trailers showed a lot of out of studio skits (Jay Walking) and game shows, Not so. Just boring interviews and a band. I’m done.

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Anonymous September 15, 2009 at 9:59 pm

thought there would be more jay waling and skits

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