‘Mockingbird Lane’ airs as Halloween special, draws decent ratings for NBC

By Daniel S Levine,

After investing $10 million in it, NBC had to do something with its Mockingbird Lane pilot. The network opted to air it as a Halloween special Friday night, using it as a lead-in to a new episode of Grimm. While it did draw decent numbers, the real question is can NBC afford to put in a series order.

According to Entertainment Weekly, the Munsters reboot, which stars Jerry O'Connell and Portia De Rossi, drew 5.4 million viewers and a 1.5 18-49 rating.

That helped give Grimm a decent boost, earning 6 million viewers and a 1.9 18-49 rating. It was a 27 percent jump from the previous episode and became the second-highest rated episode of the series, which is in its second season.

Mockingbird Lane’s pilot was directed by Superman Returns director Bryan Singer and developed by Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller. The series had been in development for years, but the ball finally got rolling at the beginning of this TV season, when casting and production on the pilot were finally completed. News that NBC would not pick up the series, despite the cost of the pilot, leaked out early this month, but Fuller tweeted that those reports were “dead wrong.”

Then, a week later, NBC officially scheduled it as a Halloween special.

Since Fuller has already moved on to another project for NBC, the chances that NBC suddenly changes its mind are slim. Fuller is currently working on Hannibal, which the network has ordered straight to series.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, NBC’s entire Friday line-up was up, with Dateline drawing a 1.5 18-49 rating. That was up 15 percent from last week.

Mockingbird Lane’s competition included Fox’s Kitchen Nightmares, which had 2.7 million viewers and a 0.9 18-49 rating. However, it could not top ABC’s Shark Tank, which drew 6.8 million viewers and a 1.8 rating in the key demo.

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