'Prison Break' Ratings Challenged
"Prison Break" came to an explosive climax last night as FOX aired the drama's fall finale. Sucre survived his jump from the plane and landed safely in Mexico. Bellick ended up in Fox River Penitentiary joining Tweener's former molester Avocado.
Revenge-hungry T-Bag shocked Mrs. Hollander and agent Kellerman turned against The Company and in a surprising twist shot agent Mahoney helping Michael and Lincoln escape. So, how has the second season of the manhunt drama done in the ratings so far?
Although the drama seems to have a loyal fan base of over 9 million viewers making it a rare FOX hit this troublesome fall for the network, the ratings are actually about 10% down from the last fall. Has the show become preposterous as some critics have suggested causing about a million people to abandon the drama this year, or has the competition become a lot tougher and it is much harder to do well?
The storytelling may have played a minor role in the decline, but the fact of the matter is that Prison Break's target audience has a lot more choice in the timeslot this year. NBC's Deal Or No Deal has helped the network reach new highs on Monday nights, last night's installment scoring 17,56 million viewers. And then there is Monday Night Football that moved to ESPN this year and starts half an hour earlier at 8:30pm.
But the truth is that "Prison Break" is very important to FOX at this time as it struggles through a truly rough fourth quarter. As we have reported earlier, the network's prime-time schedule has failed to generate a single new hit and some of the former shows are doing much worse. Therefore FOX has decided to pair the drama with their blockbuster thriller "24" from the very beginning of that show's sixth season.
And with American Idol returning on Tuesday and Wednesday nights and "House, M.D." and "The Simpsons" still going strong, FOX might finally get that ratings muscle they so desperately need.
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