/// Strong Debuts for ABC’s Nashville, the CW’s Arrow
ABC got a much-needed shot in the arm last night as the premiere of its highly-touted drama series Nashville delivered solid ratings. Per preliminary Nielsen data, the country music-inflected soap served up 8.98 million total viewers and a 2.8 in the 18-to-49 demo, winning the 10 p.m. time slot and blowing out the premiere of NBC’s Chicago Fire . The Dick Wolf firehouse drama averaged a disappointing 6.44 million viewers and a 1.9 in the demo, down 21 percent from the 2.4 rating notched a year ago by the previous time slot occupant, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit . With 18 of the 21 new series launched, Nashville now stands as the No. 3 drama of 2012-13, trailing the premieres of NBC’s Revolution (4.1) and CBS’s Elementary (3.1). Nashville was particularly well set up by a special Modern Family twin bill. The 9 p.m. installment drew 12 million viewers and a 4.7 in the demo, while the immediate lead-in to Nashville averaged 12.2 million viewers and a 4.9. All told, Nashville retained 59 percent of its comic lead-in. The pilot did see a fair amount of churn as the night progressed, losing 1.11 million viewers in the second half-hour and dropping one-half of a ratings point (to 2.5 from a 3.0). Though not nearly as splashy as Nashville , Chicago Fire ’s retention was nearly flawless, as the demo remained at the same level throughout the broadcast and total deliveries dipped by just 250,000. Sandwiched between the two series premieres, CBS’s CSI won the race for total viewers with 10.6 million, while trailing Nashville by just two-tenths of a ratings point (2.6). Nashville is the priciest new marketing environment on the broadcast TV schedule, fetching $155,000 per 30-second spot, according to SQAD NetCosts estimates. It’s also the show that critics seem to enjoy the most, earning a score of 84 out of a possible 100 points on Metacritic.
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Strong Debuts for ABC’s Nashville, the CW’s Arrow