TBS' new comedy House of Payne burst out of the gate Wednesday night (June 6), averaging a record-breaking 5.2 million and 5.8 million viewers, respectively, with back-to-back episodes at 9:00 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., according to early data from Nielsen Media Research. The episodes were the most-viewed sitcom telecasts ever on ad-supported cable.
The family-focused show, created, directed and produced by film star Tyler Perry, also broke the most-viewed sitcom record in all key demos, with the two half-hour episodes drawing 2.7 million and 3.1 million adults 18-49, respectively. Its second episode also drew significantly more viewers than its first, always a positive sign for networks as they gauge viewer interest.
Payne far outperformed TBS' primetime average - 1.4 million viewers in May - and did better than all other ad-supported cable original premieres so far this summer, including USA's limited series The Starter Wife and Lifetime's original drama Army Wives.
Turner-owned TBS bought the first-run syndicated sitcom from Debmar-Mercury last summer in a deal that gave it access to 100 full-produced episodes. TBS has exclusive rights to the show until September 2008, when it can launch in broadcast syndication.
The television industry's top news stories, analysis and blogs of the day.
Thank you for signing up to Broadcasting & Cable. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.