The first The Orville premiere ratings are in, and the ramifications here go far beyond just what’s happening with a single show. This could be a preview for Fox’s entire fall schedule, or a way to look at whether or not it makes sense to launch other shows behind afternoon NFL games and air at the same time across all coasts.
Ultimately, The Orville in its first episode drew on Sunday a 2.3 rating in the 18-49 demographic and around 7.3 million viewers, which is a pretty nice start for a show in 2018 when there are so many other viewing options out there. However, there are some caveats here given that with Hurricane Irma and preemptions for storm coverage, this could be subject still to some adjustment. Anything above a 2.0 should still be considered a win given that the idea of this show is somewhat of a high risk. You’re throwing animation star Seth MacFarlane into a live-action environment for a show that’s more genuine than it is cynical, and also one that is an homage to Star Trek and some of the other great space series of all time. If it has enough time to build a consistent following, maybe this does become a staple of the lineup. For now, though, it’s a little too early to say for sure one way or another.
Unfortunately, Fox still doesn’t have the best reputation for space series, given that we haven’t forgiven them for what they did to Firefly and we probably never will.
The Orville is going to get another chance to come on the air following an NFL game, and then after that the show will settle over into a new timeslot Thursday nights at 9:00 p.m. Eastern after Gotham. That could be a time that is actually somewhat favorable for it, other than the notion of it having to compete with a show in Arrow that may have a somewhat similar audience. All in all, we do think that the series sets a fairly nice precedent for everything coming the rest of the way this season.
If we at CarterMatt had to say right now…
We’d throw our hat in the ring of The Orville getting a season 2 renewal, even if the ratings drop. Fox and MacFarlane obviously have a great relationship, and we do think that the network needs more time to actually promote what sort of show this is as opposed to one that is a little more silly or screwball. We do feel for the series in a way in that we don’t think that many of the promos that were out there for it were actually accurate — instead, it felt more like it was trying to court Family Guy viewers before presenting them something different.
What do you think about The Orville premiere ratings?
Let us know in the comments below! Meanwhile, head over to this link if you want to take a look at The Orville episode 2 and some of what’s coming on the story there. We’ll have more coverage as the season goes on. (Photo: Fox.)