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ION High On ‘The Listener’

ION Media Networks said its investment in off-network procedural series has boosted ION to top-10 cable-network status and helped successfully launch a new original series, The Listener, in April.

ION said The Listener, about a telepathic law-enforcement consultant, played by Craig Olejnik, debuted April 1 to more than 1 million total viewers, 403,000 adults 25-54 and 849,000 households. Over its first three weeks, the series has averaged more than 1 million viewers and 872,000 households and is delivering among key demos, including adults 18-49 (376,000) and 25-54 (451,000) and women 18-49 (235,000) and 25-54 (279,000) over the same span.

The Listener airs Tuesday at 10 p.m., after a lead-in from Criminal Minds, which has become a mainstay for ION. The network’s acquisition of Law & Order: Criminal Intent also has given the Saturday night primetime lineup a 20% lift in the first quarter of 2014, it said. This fall, ION is launching CBS cop hit Blue Bloods, holding exclusive weekday off-network primetime broadcast rights, and ABC’s Rookie Blue on an off-network basis.

ION released the ratings figures as part of an overall programming release that also included adding five new original holiday movies this year and new content coming to ION's other networks, kids-focused Qubo and ION Life.