‘Roseanne’ Ruled GOP Areas: Analysis

Viewers contributing to the huge ratings for ABC’s reboot of Roseanne were most likely to come from Midwest and Rust Belt states that voted Republican, according to analysis by Samba TV.

Roseanne did a giant number for its ABC premiere, posting a 5.1 rating among viewers 18-49, and drawing 18.2 million total viewers for the two episodes that aired March 27. The New York Times noted that it was the best performing comedy on broadcast since the 2014 season premiere of The Big Bang Theory on CBS.

Eight of the 10 states over-indexing most in Roseanne viewership voted Republican in the 2016 presidential elections, headed by Nebraska, Wisconsin, Oklahoma, Missouri, Iowa and Pennsylvania. Illinois and Massachusetts were the only over-indexing states that voted Democratic in 2016, and Massachusetts was the only non-Rust Belt state in the group.

Nielsen earlier reported that two designated market areas in red-state Oklahoma, Tulsa and Oklahoma City, were among Roseanne’s 10 highest-rated cities. Cincinnati, Kansas City and Pittsburgh ranked second, third and fourth highest, per Nielsen. Chicago was fifth but New York and Los Angeles were not even in the top 20.

Roseanne star Roseanne Barr has said she is a supporter of President Donald Trump, and so is her character in the sitcom. After the show had debuted, Trump called Barr Wednesday to congratulate her on her ratings.

The Samba TV analysis also found that people who watched Fox News Channel in the prior month were most likely to tune into Roseanne, with a consumption index of 1.89. CNN viewers tuned in with a 1.56 index and MSNBC viewers had a 1.54 index.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.