With its EIGHTH season premiere in October, ABC’s underrated and overlooked comedy The Middle saw its first time slot change in six years — and the first to an entirely new night.
Since the fall of 2010, The Middle has ably anchored Wednesday nights where it held its own opposite Survivor on CBS and the then still-potent American Idol on FOX (NBC has cycled a myriad of programs through what has been their most troublesome time slot for over two decades).
Over those six seasons, The Middle has averaged 7.91 million L+SD viewers (DVR isn’t much of a factor for the show as its highest lift so far is 14% for the 2014-2015 TV season).
This season, ABC has tasked The Middle with not only anchoring their expanded comedy block on Tuesday nights, but doing so opposite NCIS on CBS (ranked #3 in total viewers last season) and The Voice on NBC (ranked #12 in total viewers last season). In comparison, The Middle ranked #53.
In its first six airings this season, The Middle is down 16% in L+SD viewership — the show’s largest year-to-year decline and the first to hit double-digits. So far, DVR lift hasn’t become much of a factor for the show as it is for NCIS and The Voice — which each experience a respective 26% and 25% lift average so far this season.
But either way, check out the worthy The Middle on Tuesday nights at 8pm on ABC. Or DVR it.