ABC’s “Resurrection” came to life with strong ratings Sunday night, according to early numbers from Nielsen.
“Resurrection,” in which residents of Arcadia, Mo., are visited by the dead, drew an average of 13.3-million viewers in its premiere.
Among key 18-to-49-year-old viewers, the premiere scored a 3.6 rating, marking TV’s best mid-season series debut in about two years in that demographic, since “Smash” launched with a huge lead-in from “The Voice.” A ratings point in the 18-to-49 category equals about 1.3 million viewers.
Sunday’s numbers mark a strong start for the new drama that faced competition from AMC’s “The Walking Dead” and the “Cosmos” reboot on Fox and multiple other networks. Numbers for “The Walking Dead” won’t be released until later today, but the show has averaged roughly 13 million viewers in its recent episodes.
The premiere follows a string of recent lackluster drama attempts, including “Mind Games” and “Killer Women."
Not counting the Oscars, ABC had its best Sunday night this season, averaging 7.9-million viewers and a 2.2 in 18-to-49 in prime time. “Once Upon a Time” returned after a three-month break with 7.3-million people watching and a 2.3 in the demo, up 21% from its last original episode. “Revenge,” now at 10 p.m., earned a solid 1.9 following the big “Resurrection” lead-in.
CBS averaged 9.5-million viewers and a demo rating of 1.6. The veteran reality show “The Amazing Race” pulled in a 1.8, up 20% from last week, though “The Good Wife” fell to 1.3 as it faced big broadcast and cable competition. “The Mentalist” returned with a 1.6, down 11% from its last new episode in January.
“Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey,” Fox’s reboot of the three-decades-old Carl Sagan PBS program, was simulcast on 10 different networks, hooked a total of 8.5 million viewers and a rating of 2.9 in the key demo. The telecast on the Fox broadcast network by itself brought in 5.8 million viewers overall and a rating of 2.1.
NBC aired just “Dateline” and a rerun of “The Voice."
[UPDATE: This post has been updated to include ratings for the 10-network premiere of “Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey.”]