The Fall television season hasn’t been off to a great start. All of the freshmen series have had less than stellar starts until Monday night’s debut of Heroes. According to Variety, NBC topped its broadcast rivals in a 4.7 share compared to CBS’ 4.4 share. This is the highest rating for the 18-49 demographic NBC has had for any Fall show in five years.
According to Nielsen nationals, “Heroes” bowed to a 5.9 rating/14 share in adults 18-49 and 14.10 million viewers overall — growing 55% from its “Deal or No Deal” lead-in (3.8/10, 13.00m). In a good sign, the drama also built audience in the second half-hour.
NBC has been hyping the super powered series since the beginning of the summer when it began leaking information across the Interweb and turning a blind eye when it appeared on bit-torrent sites around the world. They even had a large number of people logging on to iTunes to download the series for free (although free was a bit misleading).
I just finished watching the pilot myself, and will have a more comprehensive review tomorrow, but I was really pleased that NBC aired the episode with few commercial interruptions. I would love if they continued this practice throughout the remainder of “Volume One”, but knowing the Peacock Network needs the money, I’m sure we’ll see our fair share of commercial breaks.