Everybody Hates Chris

By Laura Nachman
Philadelphia Metro

September 29, 2005


The UPN network is hoping that the “hate” continues for “Everybody Hates Chris” which earned the highest ratings for a UPN comedy since the network premiered in 1995. 


Last Thursday, 7.8 million viewers tuned into the premiere of “Chris,” beating NBC’s “Joey” and Fox’s “The O.C.”  In Adults 18-49, the show was number one in New York, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C.  In Philadelphia, it was number two behind “Survivor” in the 18-49 demographic.


So was last week a fluke or will there be more haters this week?


John Consoli, Senior Editor/Network Television of “Mediaweek” said the competition tonight will be a major test for “Chris,” as ABC’s “Alias” and WB’s “Smallville” join the crowded 8 p.m. timeslot that already includes “Survivor,” “Joey,” and “The O.C.”  


“Both shows attract many young viewers, and could take some away from “Chris,” he said.  UPN spent 15-million dollars to promote “Everybody Hates Chris.”  Many times viewers tune in for the first show out of curiosity, but the writing and quality of the show will determine if it’s here to stay.”


Consoli also pointed out that although “Chris” did well in the major cities, its success is across the board.  “With the amount of viewers that tuned in, it’s more than just a hit in urban areas.”


Consoli wasn’t as optimistic for NBC, which finished in fourth place last season and is off to a shaky start this year.


“Joey” is only bringing in half the numbers as “Friends,” “The Apprentice” had its lowest premiere in its four cycles and is on the downside, and “The Apprentice:  Martha Stewart” is doing worse than expected (writer’s note:  at least having an under performing show is better than being in jail). Nobody knows what “E-Ring” (The new Dennis Hopper/Benjamin Bratt drama that had a tepid premiere) is about.  A big test for NBC will be Tuesday at 9 p.m. as “My Name is Earl” battles “Commander in Chief” on ABC, “The Amazing Race” on CBS and “House” on Fox.   NBC’s most solid night is Monday with “Las Vegas” and “Medium,” but it still loses to ABC’s “Monday Night Football.”


He added that CBS and ABC will battle for first place this year.  For CBS, the star shows are the “CSIs,” “Without a Trace,” and the new series “Criminal Minds” which beat NBC’s “ER” last week. ABC is off to a hot start with big premieres for second-year shows “Desperate Housewives” and “Lost.”