Michael Courtney/The CW
Michael Courtney/The CW
Smallville scored its biggest audience in a year last week (4.5 million viewers) and ruled its time slot among men 18-34.
The upbeat ratings came as the CW said it was pulling the plug on its planned Smallville-esque Robin series, The Graysons, and confirmed it was mulling a revamp of Melrose Place, a series that theoretically would pull in Gossip Girl women, unlike, you know, Smallville.
There's no word on whether Smallville will be back for a ninth season, although the show's executive producers recently talked up future "seasons" on the fansite KryptonSite.
Clark Kent may be a superhero out of water, but he seems to have good lungs.
Elsewhere, Heroes could use an oxygen mask, plus nine other lessons from the latest Nielsen rankings and stats:
1. Rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic didn't work. And neither did firing two producers from NBC's Heroes, which averaged only 7.8 million viewers last night, per estimates, and neared a new low among the 18-49 set.
2. If Heroes is ailing, then My Own Worst Enemy is buried. The Christian Slater series lost nearly half of Heroes' downsized audience on Monday (estimated 4.3 million).
3. If you pick up Kath & Kim (5.6 million) for the rest of the season, which NBC did, then it's only polite to extend the same courtesy to Life (5.9 million). Which NBC did.
4. When 3.1 million people look back on Election Night 2008, they'll remember how they watched history with…Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, who enjoyed record numbers for Comedy Central's Indecision franchise.
5. Over or not, the presidential campaign remains a gift to shows that talk politics. ABC's The View scored a season-high audience among women 18-49 on the day after the election. CBS' 60 Minutes, the week's No. 1 show, posted a season high among viewers (18.5 million) five days after the election (and thanks to an assist from football).
6. Oddly enough, Fox News drew far more viewers for John McCain's concession speech (7.9 million) than Barack Obama's acceptance speech (4.9 million).
7. Nick's iCarly would like to inform Disney's Hannah Montana that its new TV movie, iGo to Japan (7.6 million), was cable's top entertainment show.
8. Hannah Montana (4.9 million) would like to inform iCarly that it was cable's top-rated series, beating out, among others, Nick's debuting True Jackson, VP (4.8 million), which, by the by, would like to inform Hannah Montana that it's hot stuff, too.
9. CBS' The Big Bang Theory (9.7 million last week, estimated 10 million last night) is kinda growing on people.
10. Oldsters like to stick together. Fox's 20-season-old The Simpsons (8 million) and NBC's 19-season-old Law & Order (7.9 million) drew roughly the same size audience, although The Simpsons' was more demographically desirable.
Here's a rundown of the most-watched broadcast network prime-time shows for the week ended Sunday, according to Nielsen Media Research: