We don’t follow Big Brother ratings every night for the entirety of the season; it’s a hard thing to keep up on and, beyond that, there aren’t often huge fluctuations within the middle of a season. The viewers who watch in the early going tend to stick around.
However, it just feels like there aren’t as many viewers watching in the early going this time, at least based on the just-released viewer figures. Last night’s episode generated a 1.2 rating in the 18-49 demographic. Compared to some other shows on TV, that’s great. Compared to other seasons of Big Brother? It leaves something to be desired. That is a drop from the 1.5 rating that the show posted at the start of season 20.
Big Brother 21 premiere video: Check out our premiere reaction in the video below. Once you do that, subscribe to CarterMatt on YouTube so you don’t miss out on our daily live feed videos all season long! We also have a Big Brother 21 playlist with more news worth checking out.
So why the decline? It may not have anything to do with the show itself and more to do with competition. Last night, Big Brother aired opposite ratings titan America’s Got Talent over on NBC and it wasn’t in its typical Wednesday timeslot. Some viewers may have thought on accident that tonight was the premiere and didn’t watch. We anticipate a small uptick, though it may not be a huge one.
If there is one concern that both Big Brother and America’s Got Talent share, it’s viewer saturation. Think about it. Both of these shows are doing winter and summer cycles these days and that’s a lot for a singular program. A part of what made them each great is that you’ve got a long period of time in order to miss them. Big Brother is turning into a franchise that runs more than half the year in North America. You have almost a month of the celebrity version in America, more than two months of it in Canada, and then also more than 90 days of it this summer in the United States. You’re getting six months’ worth of house drama and that’s a lot for anyone to keep up with … though we understand that it’s a super-small percentage of people who also watch the Canadian version.
One other thing to keep in mind is that DVR/streaming viewership is still on the rise. There are more unseen viewers for many of these series than ever before.
Expect an uptick in the numbers tonight and if not then, a little later this season once viewers start to get more aware of the show and its cast. Because of the sheer mountains of money that CBS sleeps on because of the live feeds, we don’t think that this is a show going anywhere in the near future.
What’s your take on the Big Brother 21 premiere ratings? Share in the comments below, and check back for more scoop tonight. (Photo: CBS.)