JULY 2011 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE:
* Bold denotes programming change
TLC, which does occasional topical specials like the recent EXTREME COUPONING and WILLIAM & KATE: A ROYAL LOVE STORY. The schedule tends toward stacking by theme or editorial sensibility, rather than by title alone. They do not strip. Weekends carry mostly one-off hours, off-network news-magazine reversions and, most recently a few specials.
JULY 2011 PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:
Live Primetime Ratings Comparison / July 2011 vs. July 2010 (% Change)
Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample
While TLC's monthly and yearly numbers were down, the month of July was not a total loss for the network. A portion of TLC's programming did quite well - specifically, primetime Fridays were an explosive night for the network.
Packed with various iterations of hit show SAY YES TO THE DRESS, Fridays were easily TLC's best night of the week.
SAY YES TO THE DRESS: BRIDESMAIDS premiered on July 8th, capturing phenomenal ratings for the network. The new show managed to beat out returning show and fellow spinoff SAY YES TO THE DRESS: ATLANTA. The success of the DRESS franchise has been a bright spot for the network. BRIDESMAIDS continued this legacy by delivering the #1 and #2 ratings for ad-supported telecasts amongst women aged 18-49 and 25-54.
Together, BRIDESMAIDS and ATLANTA helped boost Fridays 22% with women aged 25-54. Collectively, the two spinoffs were the clear winners for July - the top ten telecasts were almost exclusively comprised of the two shows.
TODDLERS AND TIARAS also performed well for the network. While TIARAS paled in comparison to the BRIDESMAIDS spinoffs, the show did well with women in both key age demos.
19 KIDS AND COUNTING, HOARDING: BURIED ALIVE, and MY STRANGE ADDICTION were in the middle of the pack. HOARDING and ADDICTION aired on Sundays - one of the stronger nights for the network.
LITTLE COUPLE produced the weakest showing as it struggled to find an audience.
CABLEU NEED TO KNOW:
With the demise of the KATE PLUS 8 franchise fast approaching, TLC is on the brink of a new era. As its programming slate currently stands, TLC doesn't have an easy fix to fill the gaping hole left by KATE'S departure. The network is on the lookout for new programming in the same vein as KATE and other classic TLC shows. The network's first stab at patching the hole has come in the form of SEXTUPLETS TAKE NEW YORK. Coming this September, SEXTUPLETS is an obvious replacement but it remains to be seen if the new show can capture KATE'S impressive audience.
Character-driven family and ensemble casts are always in favor here. You'll notice many series are structured to work without a narrator, but this does not suggest lazy production. Good episodes of any of TLC's successful series are driven by very solid, logical, emotional storytelling. Executives at this network will know what they want, and have a well above average ability to articulate this. Seek them out. Trust what they say. Watch their air carefully. Better still, follow them closely, right here!