Smallville Hits Season Low Ratings

Published 5 years ago by

smallville logo Smallville Hits Season Low Ratings

Despite last fall’s ratings surge and a successful television movie event, Smallville is now struggling to retain the viewers it once had since returning from its month-long absence three weeks ago. Even storylines involving DC comic familiars such as the Silver Banshee and Checkmate failed to garner an audience.

Ratings finally reached an all-time season low with last week’s return of Metallo (Brian Austin Green).

Before February’s break, the average rating this season for an episode of Smallville was a respectable 2.5 million viewers. While not that high (when compared to last season), the series was still exceeding expectations – given its move to the Friday night death slot.

But, following this season’s second extended break and the news of Smallville being picked up for a tenth season, fans seem to have stopped watching. The April 2 return was down 400,000 viewers, with 2.13 million people tuning in. Each subsequent episode saw the ratings slip downward with the return of Pam Grier and Checkmate garnering a measly 1.9 million viewers and last week’s Metallo revisit bottoming out at 1.84 million viewers.

Considering Smallville has some of the most vocal and enthusiastic fans in the television industry, one has to wonder what is behind this consistent decline in ratings. Have fans become less enthusiastic since their favorite superhero drama has already received another season order, feeling as though they no longer need to actively support the Red-Blue-Blur & friends. Maybe, everyone has just had enough of the small-town superhero living in the big city?

Perhaps it’s just as simple as fans forgetting to tune in.

smallville metallo Smallville Hits Season Low RatingsDid Metallo stab Clark? Since nobody watched, we’ll never know.

I, unfortunately, fall into the group of fans who just forget watch. Sure, the missed episodes of Smallville are on my DVR, but as I notice the number growing each week, it’s an increasingly discouraging affair – as I haven’t the time, nor interest, to sit down for three hours in order to catch up.

And, since I’m not caught up, there’s no point in watching the new episodes.

Although, with the promise of the Justice Society returning, I do have some incentive to rectify the problem, but maybe I’m still in the minority.

What do you think of Smallville’s ratings decline? Have you been tuning in? If not, what’s the reason? Do you think the tenth season will be its last?

Help turn things around and watch Smallville, Friday @8PM, on The CW.

Follow me on Twitter @anthonyocasio

Source: Hollywood Reporter

TAGS: Smallville
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  1. Uhm…. Adam Knight is'nt Bruce Wayne. Lex ain't dead. Lana is just so dumb that they took her out with an equally as dumb reason. Jonathan's dead there buddy. Michael Rosenbaum isn't coming back to the show.

    And you complain that it's a bad show and you want them to try to pull off Batman? Really???

  2. Agreed

  3. I'm still watching, but not with baited breath.

    It might just be the show's time to say bye-bye, but some possible suggestions which may or may not work:

    1. Bring back Rosenbaum. Can't do that, obviously, if the man doesn't want to return.

    2. Get rid of Pam Grier. Not sure what it is, but she doesn't look interesting at all, at least not on Smallville. Please get her off, she really doesn't belong on Smallville.

    3. At least they aren't bringing Kristen back. Let her & Grier stretch their considerable talents elsewhere.

    4. Fly, already!

    5. Guest appearance by Bruce Wayne or Batman.

    Whatever they do, it might simply be over. It had a good run, they can give it one more shot and then let it rest in peace.

  4. Let's look at a few issues. “Checkmate” was pre-empted until 10:30 PM EST in Chicago. “Upgrade” was pre-empted in New York until Saturday. In the case of “Upgrade” only 86% of the affilates aired the show, compared to the normal 95%. This week will ALSO be pre-empted until 10:30 PM EST in Chicago as well.

    That alone will kill the ratings, because of how the Nieslen system is set-up in terms of “counting” viewers (pre-empted viewings do not count in the final numbers, even if it is aired that later that night or the next day). Why is this important? The show was coming back from a month hiatus, and then suddenly it was pre-empted in some areas…during SPRING. It's concievable that some viewers didn't know it was back. Look across the board on all the networks, shows are dropping like crazy right now. It seems stupid, but spring time really does lead to people not turning on the TV at night, because they can stay out later.

    The CW has also been facing a decline in affilate coverage, as shown by Upgrade only being shown in 86% of the possible 95% affilates. Sadly, the CW's entire weekly line-up is not making money for the affilates to justify carrying the channel. So it is being dropped like crazy. Two years ago, the CW had an affilate coverage in 98% of the markets on EVERY night. Now it is down to 96% during the Monday-Thursday slots, and 95% on Friday nights. This means less coverage, and less viewers.

    Lack of promotion can also be added in as an issue. How many times do we see Gossip Girl promos shown 20 times a week, and Smallville gets maybe…5? I think the issue is that the CW knows Smallville has a cult like following that they can depend on, so they don't care to try and bring in new viewers. They need to rescue the rest of their week day shows instead. Whether that is fair or not to Smallville fans is open for debate.

    So is the storyline. Yes folks, writing plays a part as well. We can debate that until we are blue in the face, but I can tell you that the show is suffering from a lack of viewers due to the issues listed above more then possibly how the show is written.

    Want a ray of sunshine in the gloom? Every show on the CW is down. The Vampire Diaries, Smallville's Thursday night replacement, is struggling to keep above 3 million viewers every week. Supernatural is down, Gossip Girl, Melrose Place, and One Tree Hill are tanking. Fly Girls and High Society can't even get above 1 million viewers. Smallville is not at risk of being cancelled mid-season unless it drops to 1.5 million and below CONSISTENTLY. Until then, it is still the 3rd-4th highest ranking show on the channel, behind America's Next Top Model, Vampire Diaries, and Supernatural.

  5. I agree, and this also speaks to the second part of this which is that by the time they get back in the spring the weather starts getting nice again and it's often comes down to recording the shows or skipping them. Smallville isn't no where near the outragous breaks the Sapranos made (Which really showed in the writing of the later series), but they really should look at how those prolonged breaks lessoned the quality of the show.

  6. i think the show suffers from stupid writing…he still has not flownn…….

  7. what are you talking about

  8. how is he a terrorist thug, are you high/

  9. they need to make dude fly. Show has been on for ten years and they are still doing the same silly situations. i.e, every episode someone is getting knocked unconcious, its a wonder these people dont suffer from head trauma. I wish the writers would grow the hell up and let the story develop at a quicker pace because as it stands now he has been on same silly stupid quest. The show really needs to speed up and get to work or they are going to continue to bleed fans

  10. Put on the super suit. It's time to be Superman.

  11. But hasn't it already pretty-much done that? The show is “Smallville” in name only at this point. I don't understand how continuing to change the drastically changed direction of the show will improve it. Clearly, longtime fans are tuning out. Speaking for myself, I liked the show the way it was. I liked Clark to be sympathetic, caring, and thoughtful, who loves his family and friends. I liked him to be an endearing farmboy, uncertain of his place in the world, not standing around burning his symbol into things and barking about how “No one is my equal!”. I liked when DC characters were special events, not gimmicks every week, in full-on comics costumes (Absolute Justice). I don't understand why the powers that be aren't looking back at old episodes that were getting 7-6-5 million viewers and go back to that, instead of FakeMetropolis with Dark!Clark and the DC Guest Variety Hour. These changes have turned off old viewers, not gotten new ones.

  12. The networks say that the extended breaks are so that there's not such a big gap between seasons.

  13. ok i know that the story has a lot to talk about, but it's seriously the time that the show finishes…
    i've been watching it since the 7th season to see when the **** is he gonna BE Superman…
    so i was eagerly waiting and hoping the episode in which in the trailer we see a man dressed in blue with a red cape, and then i watched the episode and at the end i just had to say: WTF!!… then they started that blue/red blur s***…
    now all that to say that i believe that the reason that people stop watching it is because he is still Clark Kent and NOT Superman…
    now dont give me wrong i love that show, i really do… but i believe that this season should be the last…

  14. Smallville WILL rebound, it has too loyal a fanbase to remain with these ratings.

  15. I really wish the show had been canceled this year. The rush of Clark being hired at the Daily Planet, choosing his (stupid-looking) costume this year… These things happened abruptly and offscreen, and this season has boasted a DC character guest star almost every week. The show stopped being about Clark's journey a long time ago and is now just turning into the DC promotion hour. Clark has yet to have any kind of journalism arc despite working at the Planet for two years now, and the show revolved around the forced Clark/Lois relationship for the entire first half of the season even though Clark has yet to articulate a single reason why he even likes her (“…you're Lois.”). Admittedly, I've never been a big Clark fan, and I flat-out hate him this year with his creepy violent behavior towards Tess and coldness towards everyone who isn't Lois. But when the show wrote Clark well in the past and made him easy to relate to, the show would gel a lot better and felt like it was on its A-game.

    I'm still watching the show for Chloe and will continue watching as long as she's on the show, but I have RL friends who have watched the show since the pilot, and they gave up this year at midseason because they were bored and didn't like Clark anymore. If they can make Clark more kind and easy to relate to again, and show him being heroic instead of a creepy jerk to everyone except the chick he's dating, I think the show can rebound. Season four was mocked by fans and media alike for the witch storyline silliness, but they rebounded with the finale that year. I think the numbers are so bad for Smallville now they can't do much to recover this year, but if the finale is exciting, they should be able to build buzz over the summer to recover the audience, like they did going into season five (the opposite of last year, where the finale was so bad it drove people off).

  16. Honestly, sometimes I forget to watch. Other times, it's just not convenient to do so since it's Friday night.

    But I think there are deeper problems also. Even when I remember, half the time I don't want to watch. I don't recognize the characters anymore; they've been warped into something so different than what they were even last season. Clark's actions have been violent and terrible, so completely un-Supermanly that I can hardly stomach it. Chloe was sidelined for a good portion of the season, and the two remaining original characters have had very little meaningful interaction all season long. The show has become an endless parade of DC C-list heroes and the special DC guest hook has become a joke. Add to that that they've renewed the show to go to season ten? Why?! I don't have the energy anymore to care.

  17. I think the biggest reason is these insane breaks in the middle of a season, people expect shows to be on regularly and CW is one of the worst offenders in doing this, both Smallville and Supernatural suffer.

    Imagine watching 24 with mid season breaks.

  18. I think that in retrospect the show has improved drastically from the past two seasons but it still has its flaws. I do agree that the season started off great but seems to have lost some of it's direction. Needless to say the season is still far better than I thought it would have been.
    Ok so Clark is acting a bit darker this season, so what? We needed some change from the happy-go-lucky farm boy we have season for nearly a decade. Remember that this is an ADAPTATION of teh comics and NOT a REPLICATION; there are going to be differences, especially when the show has gone on for so long (too long imo).

    In comparison with the past two seasons though there have been some very promising points of this season.
    1-Clark is costume, and where it may not be the red and blue it still looks good and NOT cheezy by any means. We also have the “S” on his chest.
    2-Zod has been brilliant. I do not believe that any villain could top Lex but he has come close.
    3-The Candor episode with Durrell (i dont know the spelling) was great and seeing Dureel on the show was definately a memorable moment.
    4-Justice League episode. Yes it was cheezy as hell, but I cannot deny thatI found myself enjoying it and I thought that the costumes and effects were pretty good. Dr Fate was GREAT and although Hawkman's voice was too much his costume was also great.
    5-The darkness in Clark. I like it. It is a great deviation from the norm. We are seeing more of his emotions and he has made some irrational moves this season but so does evry hero at one point in the other and they continually work on redemption when they realize their mistakes.
    6-Lois and Clark not Lana and Clark. Is this not what people wanted? Well it is here and I have to say I am growing to like Lois more and more episode after episode.
    7-Metallo-Great choice for the actor and GREAT portrayal of the character.
    8-Green Arrow- Clark and Oliver's superhero chemistry adds some zest to the show and adding him as a recular cast member was a great idea.
    9-Tess Mercer- She has turned out to play a great villain and has done a fair job of taking over Luthorcorp.

    Do I think the show has past its peak? MOST DEFINATELY. But has this season been interesting? Yes. I think that next year should and has to be the last season. Do it all and I am SUREEE that they can persuade Michael Rosenbaum tocome back for the finale at the very least

  19. Smallville has devolved into gimmicks, predictability. The stalls & lightswitches for Clark are ridiculously bad. They ignore his characterization by first having him abandon his life long friend (Chloe) at the worst possible time, but at the same time instantly he only cares about Lois. Wacky Hijinks. It's lame.

  20. Other possibility is that people are sick of the hypocrisy of the show. Zod gets powers (from Clark's blood?) and can fly right away, but Clark, who has had them from the moment he got here as a child, STILL can't? Come on. You are running out of excuses here.

  21. OK, vote time. Who thinks the Red Queen is Lana? … Chloe? … or Tess?

  22. I haven't watched Smallville since season 6 because I kept missing episodes and eventually just stopped watching. To be honest, I think it's gone on long enough, my favourite seasons were 1 and 2. The few bits and pieces that I saw of season 7 looked kinda lame and I haven't seen any of seasons 8 – 10. I really think the makers should know when to stop.

  23. Here in Portland, Oregon gots SMALLVILLE same time here in Pacific time on CW Portland. I got Dish Network

  24. I may be the only one to say this, but personally, I've lost a lot of interest because of the story line. I'm a fan of Superman and the Smallville show, but I haven't read the comics in depth so I don't know who/what Checkmate is, so I feel lost when they add it into the story.

    The quality of the writing just seems to have gone down hill as well, with different alliances being revealed every week. Watching the last few episodes on my computer, I couldn't help but think to myself “Remember when Smallville actually used to be a good and fun show to watch early on before the Kandorians came around?”

    I honestly thought the story started to fall apart just before they killed off Lex Luthor. Before that, the show still felt like a great adaptation of what little comics I've read of Superman. Now it just feels like an ordinary daytime soap-opera featuring super powers, with someone every week going “I haven't been completely honest with you and I've been working with so-and-so… but I'll apologize now only to take my apology back next week.”

  25. Then why the hell are you even commenting on the show? You know NOTHING about it. You don't have the right to judge.