Summer used to have far fewer offerings in terms of new TV programming---especially on the major networks. However, in more recent years, channels like CBS have built up lineups around game shows, competition series and even a few scripted originals. CBS, especially, has built a summer brand around fun escapist shows like Zoo and Braindead, but this summer, those shows haven't been doing all that well in the ratings.
Yesterday, Zoo returned to CBS for the show's second season on the air. Last year, Zoo proved to be a surprising and nice little hit, pulling in a slew of viewers and averaging over a 1.0 rating each week. That would hardly be a success during the fall, but in the summer it was certainly enough for CBS to want to give the science fiction drama a renewal order. It wasn't that the numbers were super low for the Season 2 premiere, but they weren't celebratory, either. The premiere saw 5.1 million people catch the ep during Live + Same Day viewing, however that only translated to a .8 rating, per TV Line. Thus, in the advertising demographic, Zoo actually hit a series low.
Elsewhere, the network has had Braindead and Person of Interest on its summer schedule. The former series is from the creators of The Good Wife, but the numbers have not reached nearly such great heights. Braindead is probably going to get cancelled, as its most recent ratings only saw 2 million people tune in, translating to a .5 rating.
Person of Interest didn't fare much better. Once one of CBS' most popular shows, the network kept the drama off of its schedule this fall and this spring, instead opting to give POI a shortened final season on the network during the summertime. That drama also had a fairly low-rated finale, ending its run with a 1.0 rating and 6.5 million total viewers--OK for summer, but not great when compared to the show's heyday.
A few years ago, CBS scored a big hit with Under the Dome, but in the time since the network has struggled a bit, using scripted fare to compete with stuff like American Ninja Warrior, America's Got Talent and Celebrity Family Feud. Most of the time, scripted fare is more popular than a lot of the other programs that TV has to offer, but in the summertime, the unscripted fare is still reigning supreme.
Usually ratings tend to get worse after the premiere, but there wasn't a ton of hype for Season 2 of Zoo. We'll let you know if the ratings improve as the show moves forward and more people know it's back. New episodes of Zoo air on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET, only on CBS. To see what else the networks still have coming up this summer, check out our TV premiere schedule.