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It’s an inevitability of the TV season that one show has to be the black sheep of the bunch, with little more to show for itself than divebombed ratings and dismal critical reactions. This may not come as a surprise to you, ladies and gents, but TV’s hot dumpster fire of Fall 2015 is the ABC anthology drama Wicked City. How bad is it? Last night’s episode was the lowest-rated episode of anything the Big 4 broadcast networks have been offering this fall. I’d be remiss if I didn’t call this news wicked shitty.
Tuesday nights might not be the strongest night of the TV week, but there’s definitely something for everyone. It’s just that no one wants Wicked City, and audiences proved that through the show only attracting 1.69 million people for Episode 3, “Should I Stay or Should I Go?” Such a fitting title, as it’s something that people were probably asking about the show itself, and “go” they went, to other shows across the dial.
Perhaps more depressing than Wicked City’s six feet deep overall ratings is how few people within the key 18-49 demographic tuned in. According to TV By the Numbers, the show earned a 0.4 demo rating. I’m pretty sure a random hour at Walmart or CostCo has more 18-49-year-olds in it at once than the group that was watching Wicked City on Tuesday. The only major show to get lower ratings – iZombie, which airs on The CW and not the Big 4 – brought in 1.42 million viewers, but still earned a 0.6 demo rating.
This isn’t the most shocking turn of events for the new drama, as Wicked City only premiered to 3.2 million viewers on the night. The harsh word-of-mouth didn’t exactly bring people in droves to Episode 2, which saw a ratings drop to 2.4 million total viewers.
On the flip side, the night was completely won by CBS dramas, as NCIS and NCIS: New Orleans brought in over 16 million and 12 million, respectively. The Voice was another big winner, and its lead-in audience helped Chicago Fire to also have a good night. Unfortunately, ABC just doesn’t have any great lead-in shows on Tuesday night, and Wicked City seems destined for obliteration.
It’ll be really interesting to see how ABC handles the Stephen Bagelman-created period crime drama going forward. They obviously won’t be looking for a Season 2 at any point, but this fall season has seen zero cancelations for new network shows, with most outlets choosing to chop episode orders rather than end anything outright. Will Wicked City be the first to get axed, or will it just stay on the air until the lack of an audience makes it implode?