If CBS is simply waiting on waning viewer interest to give Carter Bays and Craig Thomas the go-ahead on Operation Yellow Umbrella, then the ratings for last night’s How I Met Your Mother première may as well come in the form of a green light. (Or delivered to Bays and Thomas’ office inside a toy bus. With a mythology this complicated, it’s difficult to be precise with the metaphors.)
In the 18-49 demographic, early reports have HIMYM at a 3.4 rating, down from last year’s 4.7, a trend across the board for CBS’ venerable stable of multi-camera sitcoms. Mike & Molly took a tiny tumble (a discrepancy with the weight of its stars about which the writers of Mike & Molly are surely drafting zingers at this very moment) while 2 Broke Girls proved it can hold its own at 9 p.m.—even if the lack of a lead-in from the first Two And A Half Men without Charlie Sheen caused its second-season première to fall several points short of the impressive 7.1 rating for its series première. Also paling in comparison to those Ashton Kutcher-assisted numbers is the debut of Partners, which drew 2.4 percent of under-50 Nielsen households despite its 2 Broke Girls-like reliance on outmoded reference points and groan-inducing stereotypes.
Though a full network slate predictably eroded NBC’s dominant stance over the night, it still notched a ratings victory over the CBS comedies and the first all-star installment of Dancing With The Stars. Nearly 2.5 million more viewers opted for the dancing competition over The Voice, but a 4.2 18-49 rating more or less installs a rotating mechanism in the Monday-night throne. (It’s still nothing compared to Two And A Half Men’s 10.7 from Première Week 2011—maybe the producers should consider killing off Adam Levine.)
And with Revolution down-but-steady, the pick for the first casualty of the new fall season is officially Fox’s The Mob Doctor, which, with its fusion of medical drama and crime thriller, provides all manner of witty imagery for summing up its dire fortunes. It’s either sleeping with the fishes, dead on arrival, or being fitted for a set of cement OR scrubs. Once, again, it’s tough to be precise with the metaphors on this one.