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20/20 Robin Williams Special (ABC) Up to 7.2m viewers
Running Wild with Bear Grylls (NBC) Scored a 1.5 in A18-49
Mistresses (ABC) Up a tenth in A18-49
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Wipeout (ABC) Falls to a 0.8 in A18-49
Under The Dome (CBS) Down to a 1.5 in A18-49
Rising Star (ABC) Drops two tenths in A18-49
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On Friday 8th August, Cinemax had the premiere of their new original series, The Knick. The Steven Soderbergh-directed show stars Clive Owen as a Victorian-era surgeon in turn-of-the-century Manhattan. The show follows the lives of the surgeons and nurses at Knickerbocker Hospital and a doctor (Owen) who is pushing the boundaries of medicine at a time
with no antibiotics. The premiere drew 1.7m viewers in its first few days across airings on both Cinemax and HBO (sister networks). Its debut on Cinemax achieved 354,000 viewers, with three additional transmissions over the night adding 303,000 viewers. An airing of the episode on HBO on Saturday resulted in 533,000 viewers - a decent start for the new show.
On Saturday 9th August at 9pm, Starz launched their new drama Outlander. The series, from executive producer Ron Moore (Battlestar Galactica), is based on Diana Gabaldon’s best sellers. Set in Scotland, the show centers on Claire Randall (Caitriona Balfe), a British World War II combat nurse who’s on vacation after the war, when she visits a mysterious rock formation and finds herself thrown back through time to the 18th century. From there, she’s forced to try to figure out how to get back to her time while also attempting to survive in a very different and sometimes dangerous environment. The premium cable network began with a week of multi-platform previews that achieved nearly 900,000 views, (not surprising given the books’ massive fanbase). It then had a network debut of 720,000 viewers. Like Cinemax’s multiple airings, Starz similarly built up a strong total, with three Saturday replays achieving another 1.5m, followed by a Sunday airing. The new show got a total weekend viewership of 2.3m, beating their other new drama Power, which attracted 2m viewers for its opening weekend.
On Sunday 10th August at 9pm, Spike TV premiered their new summer reality show, Gym Rescue. The show has MMA legends Randy Couture and Frank Shamrock use their years of expertise in the business of mixed martial arts to help turn struggling gyms into thriving enterprises.
Also that night, but at 8pm, National Geographic had the premiere of their new 3-+part mini-series, Life and Death Row. The show follows a story about capital punishment through the lives of the victims as well as the convicted and their families, with each part of the three-part mini-series focusing on a key aspect of the capital punishment system: execution, trial, and appeal.
On Monday 11th August at 11pm, Sundance Channel launched their new magazine show, The Approval Matrix. The show is hosted by Neal Brennan (best known for creating “Chappelle’s Show” with Dave Chappelle), and panelists and host argue a topic while pushing a small block representing that topic around a grid board. The premiere featured Julie Klausner, Willie Geist, Neal Brennan, Whitney Cummings and Matt Roush and the most recent controversial entertainment and news items were debated.
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Some titles in development:
FX have a new comedy, Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll. The show follows a middle-aged rock ‘n roller who desperately wants to be rich and famous but is so far having no luck. The series is produced by FOX Television Studios and Apostle Pictures.
ABC Family are developing a new drama, Guidance. The show follows High school guidance counselor Anna Schmidt, who doesn’t handle her job with finesse but is entirely committed to helping the kids. The series is produced by AwesomenessTV.
Comedy Central’s new comedy title in development is I Live with Models. Produced by Roughcut Television, the show is set on the fringes of the fashion industry and centers on the everyday comical adventures of four 20-somethings coming face to face with the real world.
Amazon have a comedy in development, The Peak. Produced by Amazon Studios, the show centers around a group of female twenty-somethings living in Hong Kong.