SEAL Team season 2 ratings preview: Expectations for its big return!

SEAL TeamSEAL Team fans, we know you’ve been waiting through a long (and certainly exhausting) hiatus, but the Bravo Team is back for duty on CBS Wednesday night. Unfortunately, there is going to be something different right away … mostly in the form of an all-new timeslot at 10:00 p.m. Eastern.


What difference does an hour make? It’s just one hour … right? That’s the easy assumption to make, and for a lot of people out there, that’s probably the thinking! We especially feel that way for a lot of the diehard fans who are reading this since they could air this at midnight on Saturday nights and they will tune in. Of course, the SEAL Team faithful will report for duty tomorrow when the show returns, as they already know some of the stakes. Despite the loyal following, this is a series hovering somewhat on the ratings bubble, and the ratings on CBS the rest of the way will likely tip the renewal scales. We remain cautiously optimistic, but we do also want to place most of the pieces on the board in the piece to look at precisely where this show is … and also just what it’s up against.

The performance so far – So far, season 2 is posting a 0.8 live rating in the 18-49 demographic — that’s the key one that CBS/many other major television networks covet. Let’s get our thoughts out of the way here — the Nielsen ratings system is archaic, antiquated, and definitely worth pounding your head on the nearest wall over. It doesn’t change that this is still what networks use because they gotta give information to advertisers.

The ratings for season on average are down around 16% in both total viewers and the demo from season 1 — that sort of drop is reasonable year-to-year for a second year show. Ideally, we like to see 15% or less, but we’re not oblivious to ALL of the different ways in which people want to watch TV nowadays. Here, you’ve got DVR, On-Demand, and streaming. CBS does look at this stuff, but if there is a ratings kingdom that exists out there in the world, the live demo numbers are sitting atop the throne with a million dollar crown on their head.

The difference an hour makes – This is where airing at 10:00 p.m. makes a difference. There’s often a drop in shows from 9:00 to 10:00, mostly because there are a ton of early-birds who realize that they need to get to sleep to get that worm bright and early in the morning more than they need to watch a show live. We’re not going to tell some early rises how to live their lives, but this is the biggest threat that SEAL Team faces — a drop-off of around 10% or more because of people going to bed at a reasonable time. The other threat is that for much of its run, SEAL Team has had the luxury of airing after Survivor, one of TV’s most-consistent shows even if it and SEAL Team don’t have a ton in common. For tomorrow’s episode, it’ll have the benefit still of coming on after a two-hour Survivor event. Following that, it’ll be coming on after the Tim Tebow-hosted Million Dollar Mile, a total unknown in a feast-or-famine era of reality TV.

The other competition – At 9:00 p.m., SEAL Team had the task of airing opposite STAR, comedies over on ABC, and then also Chicago Fire — arguably its biggest foe since the two both focus on heroes trying to save the day. In the new timeslot, the threats will include Chicago PD (a big threat, but it’s not back until the 27th) and Whiskey Cavalier. The latter’s done okay in the ratings the past few weeks, but it hasn’t had to air against the Titans at 10:00 too much. (Titans at 10:00 ironically sounds like a show we would watch.)

Our final stance

If you love SEAL Team, you gotta watch live! We’re going to see some of Bravo Team’s toughest missions play out over the next several weeks, but for us as viewers, one of the toughest missions remains working to ensure that this show sticks around on the air through all of the highs and lows that are coming. Airing late is a challenge, but we have to hope that these viewers are up for it.

Want to preview where things are going with SEAL Team?

Then remember to visit the link here, and also let us know some of your expectations for the upcoming episodes below! (Photo: CBS.)

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