Spike TV Scores With UFC, ‘DEA’ Debuts

The combination of fresh Ultimate Fighting Championship fare and the bow of new original series DEA spiked ratings for Spike TV Wednesday, making it the top draw among key male demos in all of cable April 2 from 7 p.m. to midnight.

DEA, a look at a group of special agents and task force officers in the Detroit division of the Drug Enforcement Agency from Al Roker Entertainment Inc., in association with Size 12 Productions, drew 1.3 million viewers in the 11 p.m. hour, according to Nielsen Media Research data. 

The performance was the best for an original non-scripted show on Spike since Pros vs. Joes premiered two years ago, according to network officials. The show notched a 1.0 household rating overall and a 1.2 against men 18 to 49, translating into 679,000 of those watchers, as well as a like rating among men 18 to 34, or 341,000 of those watchers.

As for the UFC, Spike scored well with the circuit’s bouts, pinning a 1.1 household rating and 1.3 million viewers from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. All told, UFC Fight Night Livegarnered a 1.35 rating among men 18 to 49 (748,000), a 1.56 among men 18 to 34 (433,000) and a 0.84 mark against persons 18 to 49 (945,000).

The seventh season premiere of reality show The Ultimate Fighter, in which competitors train and battle to become a member of the circuit, delivered a 1.3 household rating and 1.7 million total viewers in the 10 p.m. hour. The tale of the tape among men: a 1.3 with the 18-to-49 set (996,000); and a 2.2 against the 18-to-34 crowd (628,000).

Overall, Spike's new night of originals attracted more males 18 to 49 (1.4 rating/786,000) and 25 to 34 (1.8 rating/300,000) than any other cable network over the aforementioned five-hour span, according to network officials.

“From the UFC stars in the Octagon to the DEA heroes on the streets of Detroit, Spike originals feature distinctive characters seen nowhere else on television that resonate with our young guy audience,” said Spike TV president Kevin Kay in a statement.