‘Scandal’ debuts to big ratings, and other TV news this week

October 4, 2013

We already know Washingtonians love “Scandal,” and it appears the show’s fanbase is increasing in a big way. Thursday night’s third season premiere (in which D.C. fixer Olivia Pope’s name was leaked as the president’s mistress) racked up 10.5 million viewers.

Kerry Washington, reflecting on ABC's "Scandal." (AP Photo/ABC, )
Kerry Washington, reflecting on ABC’s “Scandal.” (AP Photo/ABC, )

That’s the drama’s highest-rated episode ever, and a big gain over the 6.7 million who tuned in for last year’s opener. But the show — which was tweeted about 712,877 times last night — has been nothing but buzz lately, including an Emmy nom for lead actress Kerry Washington.

And the District is still a fan of the GWU grad; according to ABC, D.C. was the third highest-rated market in the coveted 18-49 year-old demographic. The fans that beat us out? Only Charlotte and Atlanta ranked higher.

In other TV news this week:

* And the first fall renewal is… We’re still waiting on the first cancellation of the season (“Lucky 7″?)**, but in the meantime, we already have a winner for the first renewal. Fox announced on Tuesday that the network picked up its very weird drama “Sleepy Hollow” for Season 2. “This show has proven to be a risk well worth taking,” Fox entertainment chairman Kevin Reilly said in the announcement. “Sleepy Hollow” debuted in mid-September with 13.6 million viewers (including DVR viewing), making it a big success — that’s Fox’s highest-rated fall drama premiere since “24,” back in 2001. The network has ordered 13 episodes for next year.

(UPDATE, 4 p.m.) **And the first fall cancellation is…“Lucky 7,” which we brazenly guessed in this post earlier today, was actually pulled off the schedule by ABC on Friday afternoon. That’s after just two episodes, and some very dismal ratings. ABC reps confirmed that repeats of “Scandal” will replace the lottery-themed drama on Tuesdays at 10 p.m.

* How has this reality show not happened yet? It’s about time a reality show sent someone into space. And it’s really happening thanks to NBC and Mark Burnett, who have teamed with Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic for the new series “Space Race.” A group of people compete for the chance to be sent to space, just for fun. Says Sir Richard, a realist, “Virgin Galactic’s mission is to democratize space, eventually making commercial space travel affordable and accessible to all.”

* A really depressing “Glee” preview. Speaking of Fox, get ready for a super-sad episode of “Glee” next Thursday. A preview for next week’s Cory Monteith tribute episode has been released, showing a sobbing Rachel (Lea Michele) while her classmates solemnly put a football in front Finn’s locker, as a memorial. Prepare yourself for lots of gut-wrenching tunes as the McKinley High students say farewell to their good friend, including Adele’s “Make You Feel My Love.”

Emily Yahr is an entertainment reporter and pop culture blogger for the Style section. She joined the Post in May 2008, a week before she graduated from the University of Maryland, and worked on Lisa de Moraes' TV Column and blog.
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Manuel Roig-Franzia | October 4, 2013