Nick Lachey, High School Musical: Get in the Picture

ABC/Greg Zabilski

Guess not too many people are planning to stay for the end credits of High School Musical 3.

High School Musical: Get in the Picture, the new ABC reality show that promises to cast its winner in a music video to play during HSM3's aforementioned crawl, failed its first—and second—ratings tests.

Sunday's inaugural episode placed 69th in Nielsen Media Research's latest weekly rankings. It finished fourth, or last, in its time slot behind nonstellar broadcast competition led by CBS' Big Brother (33rd place, 5.7 million). Its 4 million viewers were more fitting for an umpteenth HSM rerun on Disney Channel than a broadcast premiere.

In an otherwise solid summer for ABC, HSM: Get in the Picture's premiere was the network's second worst, after the gone and forgotten Dance Machine.

Monday's follow-up fared even worse, averaging an estimated 3.2 million viewers, and making NBC's typically scrawny American Gladiators (5.1 million) look pumped by comparison. (Monday's numbers will be reflected in next week's rankings.)

As corporate synergy would have it, the Nick Lachey-hosted series debuted just as ABC parent company Disney was unveiling its teaser trailer for HSM 3: Senior Year, due out in theaters Oct. 24.

Yes, the Wildcats are all in this together. At least for the next several weeks.

Here are the week's other rating highlights:

  • HSM: Get in the Picture aside, this summer has been about good ratings more than bad. Even baseball got in the swing of things. The 2008 All-Star Game (first place, 14.5 million) scored Fox its biggest midsummer audience since 2002. In cable, ESPN ruled with coverage of the Josh Hamilton show, otherwise known as the Home Run Derby (9.1 million).
  • Airing opposite the baseball game, ABC's Wipeout (seventh place, 8.7 million) took a tumble but stayed strong in the 18-to-49 demographic, where it was second.
  • NBC's America's Got Talent (second place, 12.8 million) does not tumble, baseball or no.
  • CBS is promoting its summertime cop show Flashpoint (18th place, 7.1 million) from Fridays to Thursdays.
  • ABC's The Mole (92nd place, 2.9 million for its first episode; 75th place, 3.6 million for its second) is going nowhere.
  • In cable, it was almost all about USA's hourlong shows: Monk (5.6 million); Psych (4.9 million); Burn Notice (4.87 million); Law & Order: Criminal Intent (4.8 million); and In Plain Sight (4.7 million).
  • TNT would like to think it was all about their hourlong shows: The top-rated The Closer (7.8 million) and Saving Grace (5.2 million).
  • The third-season finale of Nickelodeon's Avatar went out in record fashion, averaging 5.6 million, a series high, and dominating Saturday with its two-hour closer called Sozins Comet.
  • Bravo's Project Runway (2.9 million) looked ever fashionable in its fifth-season premiere, but the Food Network's The Next Food Network Star drew the biggest reality-show audience (3.2 million).
  • ESPN's ESPY Awards broadcast (3.3 million) was up 18 percent from last year.

In the network races, baseball led Fox to wins as the most-watched network (7.1 million) and the highest-rated one among young adults.

In cable, USA (3 million) held the prime-time advantage over Disney (2.4 million) and TNT (2.3 million).

Here's a look at the 10 most-watched broadcast network prime-time shows for the week ended Sunday, according to Nielsen Media Research:

  1. MLB All-Star Game, Fox, 14.5 million viewers
  2. America's Got Talent, NBC, 12.8 million viewers
  3. MLB All-Star Game Pregame, Fox, 10.4 million viewers
  4. Criminal Minds, CBS, 9.3 million viewers
  5. So You Think You Can Dance (Wednesday), Fox, 9 million viewers
  6. CSI, CBS, 8.9 million viewers
  7. Wipeout, ABC, 8.7 million viewers
  8. CSI: NY, CBS, 8.6 million viewers
  9. So You Think You Can Dance (Thursday), Fox, 8.4 million viewers
  10. Two and a Half Men, CBS, 8.39 million viewers
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