After posting some pretty dismal ratings last week with Fighter Flight, this week’s episode, Rise of the Old Masters bounced back strong, thanks in large part to ABC’s re-broadcast of the series premiere, Spark of Rebellion, this past Sunday. Last week’s episode had only managed to attract some 580,000 viewers, surprising many Star Wars fans, and calling into question the long term prospects of the show. However, this week’s installment on DisneyXD jumped an impressive 366,000 viewers, with a total of some 946,000 total viewers, nearly matching the DisneyXD premiere of Rebels.
It appears the airing of the series premiere on ABC had a significant effect in adding more viewers this week, despite Rebels being pitted against an NFL game that had run into prime time, the opening of Sunday Night Football, and the Pre-Game Show of the World Series. According to Disney, Rebels posted its best numbers ever among kids 6-11.
Per the Disney press release:
“Star Wars Rebels” (9:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.)
At 9 o’clock, “Star Wars Rebels” generated series highs in Kids 6-11 (359,000/1.5 rating) and Tweens 9-14 (322,000/1.3 rating) and near series highs in Total Viewers (946,000), Kids 2-11 (452,000/1.2 rating), Kids 6-14 (466,000/1.3 rating), Boys 6-14 (351,000/1.9 rating), Boys 6-11 (278,000/2.3 rating) and Boys 9-14 (227,000/1.8 rating).
Doing Math So You Don’t Have To
Disney of course muddied the waters with this weeks numbers by adding a new category of viewers, “Tweens,” covering the 9-14 year old demographic. Unfortunately that creates some overlap with the standard 6-11 demographic, but by getting out my trusty calculator, and applying some math skills, I was able to find more interesting results again in these numbers, especially as it relates to young female viewers.
While the press release focuses almost exclusively on boys there are some encouraging signs for fangirls. The DisneyXD series premiere, Droids In Distress, had nearly 112,000 female viewers ages 6-14, however this week’s episode saw nearly 115,000 young girls take the plunge and watch Rebels despite overall viewership being down some 86,000 from the premiere. While Droids In Distress managed to attract some 73,000 girls age 6-11, this week’s broadcast brought in nearly 8,000 more young female viewers for a total of 81,000. And despite the smaller viewer base from Droids, the 12-14 age demographic among young girls remained largely unchanged shedding only 5,000 viewers in that bracket.
While girls 6-11 only made up 22% of all viewers in that demographic, young female Padawans ages 12-14 made up 30% of all viewers 12-14. Once again the 12-14 demographic is very enlightening, and it appears male viewers in that age range are moving away from the show, with some 13,000 fewer boys taking in the show. Meanwhile female viewership remains in the 12-14 demographic remains largely stable. Boys 12-14 make up only 20% of all male viewers 6-14, while girls 12-14 still make up over 30% of all female viewers 6-14. Again the show has demonstrated an attraction with young tween/teen girls, and Disney should be exploiting that.
I would encourage fangirls to keep spreading the word about the show, and keep applying pressure on Disney, and the folks at Lucasfilm, to broadcast the show on a channel that more young girls are likely to watch, like the Disney Channel. DisneyXD’s most successful animated show to date, Ultimate Spider-Man, just completed a highly successful run on the Disney Channel bringing in almost 2 million viewers and episode. With the increased exposure of broadcasting on Disney Channel it is likely Rebels would perform as well, if not better. Additionally, I think periodic broadcasts on ABC could expand the viewer base as well.
Considering how good Rise of the Old Masters was, there is every reason to believe Rebels will be able to hold onto viewers better than DisneyXD’s debut episode. So keep spreading the word, and keep watching!
May the Force Be With You