Ever since comic book properties took over the box office, it's become pretty obvious to anyone with a remote control that times have changed since a show like Smallville was the rare hit superhero series. At the moment, both comic juggernauts, Marvel and DC, are steadily growing their prime time presence. Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Arrow bring viewers comics-inspired stories each week, and their respective studios are already committed to delivering additional shows to flesh out their TV fanbase.
This season alone, DC has seen the premiere of both Fox's Gotham crime drama series and The CW's Arrow spinoff, The Flash. The former already debuted to promising ratings a couple weeks ago, and now the Scarlet Speedster has hit the airwaves (read our review of the premiere) with even higher numbers.
According to TV By the Numbers, The Flash - which stars Grant Gustin as the title hero - scored 4.5 million viewers and a 1.8 in the critical 18-49 adult demo. That was enough to make it the highest-rated season premiere The CW has landed since 90210 in 2008 and the network's highest-rated series premiere since The Vampire Diaries debuted in 2009. Granted, the show's performance will shift once DVR numbers are factored in, but The CW has to be pleased with The Flash's fittingly fast start.
With Arrow and now The Flash proving to be successes for DC, it'll be interesting to see if the company sticks to its decision to keep the shows separated from the developing film universe. Green Arrow and The Flash are among the team's most popular members, and it wouldn't come as a total surprise if DC/WB was waiting to see if both series continue to perform well before committing to any connection to the films (or lack thereof).
In any case, DC clearly has nailed the formula to translating its characters on the small screen. Assuming The Flash is able to maintain solid viewership - a likely scenario considering that a large chunk of Arrow's audience will probably turn up for both shows - it truly opens the doors to other DC superhero series (including future comic book shows on The CW), while also boding well for the upcoming Supergirl show on CBS.
What did you think of The Flash series premiere, and how do you hope to see the TV side of the DC universe develop? Sound off in the comments section below.
The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8pm on The CW.
Source: TV By the Numbers