Solid Start for New VH1 Originals

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On the heels of its most-viewed summer ever, VH1 scored high ratings marks with the debut of two original series, The Surreal Life and In Search of the Partridge Family.

The Sept. 5 debut of Surreal Life’s third season — the previous two seasons premiered on The WB — averaged a 1.4 household rating, according to Nielsen Media Research. That figure represents a 180% jump from the network’s 0.5 second-quarter primetime ratings average.

With some 1.7 million total viewers, The Surreal Life’s third-season bow tied two premiere installments of I Love The ’90s during the week of July 12 as VH1’s highest-rated telecasts of the year.

The show, which chronicles the lives and adventures of six unlikely “celebrities” living together in a Hollywood mansion for an extended period, also scored a 1.3 rating against the adult 18-to-49 demo, bringing in 1.3 million of those watchers.

Also on Sept. 5, the first installment of In Search of the Partridge Family generated a 0.5 household rating.

The show, a take-off of the 1970s Partridge Family sitcom, also garnered a 0.4 mark against adults 18 to 49 (431,000) and 546,000 total viewers, a 63% increase over total viewership the same day in 2003, said VH1 officials.

The two shows comes on the heels of VH1’s best summer ratings period (May 31 to Aug. 29), during which the network averaged a 0.4 primetime average among viewers 18 to 49, up 33% compared to summer 2003’s average of 0.3.

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