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‘Outsiders’ Solid In Return On WGN America, ‘The New Edition Story’ Opens To Big Ratings On BET

Deadline logo Deadline 1/25/2017 Nellie Andreeva
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The second season of WGN America’sOutsiders opened to 932,000 total viewers and 414,000 adults 25-54 last night. That was off slightly from the drama’s series premiere (1.055 million, 443,000 in 25-54), though the 2016 opener aired commercial-free. The Season 2 debut was up 13% from the Season 1 average viewership and 14% in 24-54, though it drew fewer Live+Same Day viewers than the last two episodes of the first seasons. For the four-play cume on Tuesday, Outsiders delivered a 1.709 milliontotal viewers and 766,000 adults 25-54. Outsiders, along with Underground, helped WGNA post its first year-to-year ratings gain since embarking on original programming in 2016, up 16% in total viewers and 14% among adults 25-54. However, the future of that strategy is now uncertain following today’s announcement that Tribune CEO Peter Liguori, who had champioed WGNA’s foray into original series, will be leaving the company, which is for sale.

Biopics of famous singers and groups from the recent past continue to be ratings gold. The opening chapter of BET’s three-part miniseries The New Edition Story drew 4.2 million viewers and 2.5 million adults 18-49 last night, the cable network’s  most watched telecast in five years, since the Season 5 premiere of The Game. Simulcast on BET’s sister network Centric, the miniseries scored a combined 4.4 million viewers and 2.6 million adults 18-49.

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