New Shows Offer NBC Ray of Hope

Southland , Parks and Recreation lead upturn
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Apr 15, 2009 12:03 PM CDT
NBC late-night star Jay Leno performs during a stand up show billed as "Jay's Comedy Stimulus Plan" at the Palace in the Detroit suburb of Auburn Hills, Mich., Tuesday, April 7, 2009.    (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
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(Newser) – After years of poor ratings, NBC may be on the rebound with the help of two new series: cop show Southland and Amy Poehler’s comedy Parks and Recreation. Parks scored only 6.9 million total viewers, but it maintained 88% of The Office’s coveted young-adult audience. Southland topped CBS’ Harper’s Island in the 18-to-49 demographic and beat expectations by almost equaling Harper’s Island's total viewership.

NBC’s young-adult viewership hasn’t dropped this season, ending a longstanding downward trend, while ABC and Fox have lost viewers. And American Idol’s domination seems to be waning. But NBC has a long way to go: it’s the fourth-ranked network in total viewers and only has one top-10 show, Sunday Night Football, which ends halfway through the TV season.