The CW’s small-screen answer to the Twilight phenomena, The Vampire Diaries, has been on the air for three weeks. So, will the vampire series have a long life or will its life be cut short, staked to the heart like The Beautiful Life?
The Vampire Diaries story begins with teens Elena (Nina Dobrev) and Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen) adjusting to life after the sudden death of their parents. Elena manages to find some comfort with friends like Bonnie (Katerina Graham), Caroline (Candice Accola), and former boyfriend Matt (Zach Roerig). Jeremy is on a more dangerous path, hanging out with stoners and using drugs.
As the new school year begins, Elena becomes drawn to a handsome and mysterious new student, Stefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley), who is secretly a vampire. Later, Elena almost dies from a savage bite to the neck. It comes courtesy of Stefan’s evil and estranged brother, Damon (Ian Somerhalder), who’s also in love with the mortal girl.
The supernatural drama debuted on September 10th to 4.91 million viewers and a 2.1/7 rating/share among adults 18-49. What’s more, viewership grew between the first and second half hours, a good indication that people liked what they saw and would return the following week.
Though those numbers still put the show in third place for its timeslot, Vampire Diaries outperformed Smallville’s season opener a year earlier. For the struggling CW network, the premiere looked very good.
Unfortunately, a week later, the news wasn’t as rosy. With tougher competition from other networks, Vampire Diaries fell to fifth place in the ratings. Viewership dropped to 3.76 million and a 1.6/5 in the key demo. That’s a drop of 23% from the prior week’s audience. Still, considering the numbers from other CW shows, they’re considered respectable.
Last week, the numbers seemed to level off and even grow a little. An average of 3.81 million watched with a 1.7/5. The show was in fifth place in the timeslot and fourth place in the demo, tied with NBC’s struggling SNL Weekend Update Thursday and Parks and Recreation.
While the series isn’t a failure for the struggling CW network, it’s surely not as big a hit as they were hoping for, especially considering the popularity of the Twilight movie and books. The network’s already given the show a full season order and will certainly stick with it in hopes of growing its audience even further.
What do you think? Considering the subject matter, why aren’t more people tuning in? Is the show worth watching or would you cancel it?