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TruTV Analysis


Original series dominate truTV's primetime schedule.   On a given night, a single original series will tend to run in a solid block throughout primetime.  There's a heavy reliance on blue collar reality (HARDCORE PAWN, OPERATION REPO, etc), while comedic video clip properties and a handful of other series fill out the remainder of the schedule.

As new series are introduced to the schedule, the network creates a few generic slots across the week for repeats.  Additional exhibitions in short bursts of 2-4 weeks give their new titles a chance to gain recognition with the casual viewer.  When a series does break out, like OPERATION REPO, they move it into a regular timeslot.

With the transition from court TV to truTv at the beginning of 2008, the crime and investigation focus was replaced with a broader, non-fiction/reality mix of programs. Since its rebranding, truTV's has pursued reality programming with a special focus on repo and pawning.


Live Primetime Ratings Comparison June 2012 vs. June 2011 (% Change)

Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample

TruTv improved from last month but dropped down from a year ago. The monthly increase can mostly be attributed to the season premieres of a few of tru’s most popular programs.

Following a four-month hiatus, STORAGE HUNTERS returned to the lineup with very strong numbers among men. TruTV does a very good job diversifying its nightly primetime schedule and STORAGE lent a significant presence to Sundays: it was the second most watched night among men aged 25-54.

All three of STORAGE’s premiere broadcasts made the network’s list of top 20 telecasts in addition to six reruns. In other words, STORAGE comprised nearly half of the month’s top telecasts. From a household standpoint, STORAGE was also the most viewed program of the month.

While earning the most household views is an impressive feat, having the largest audience among men is even more of an accomplishment (on truTV). The perennially successful HARDCORE PAWN won this distinction and made Tuesdays the most popular night for the network. What is more, PAWN’s popularity does not appear to be waning: the show is up 4% among viewers compared to the same time last year.

LIZARD LICK TOWING also returned in June and delivered very respectable numbers – especially among young men aged 18-49. LIZARD aired a marathon block on Monday nights and improved upon the previous month’s Monday numbers by 30% among men 18-49. Last month tru aired reruns of popular programs on Monday.

The trifecta of STORAGE, PAWN, and LIZARD dominated tru’s June schedule. OPERATION REPO, airing on Wednesdays, had a sole telecast among the top 20 and was the only program outside of truTV’s big three to crack the list. OPERATION had a fair month overall and enjoyed a 24% increase from last month (which featured a single premiere episode).

The remainder of tru’s schedule was fairly disappointing – despite airing new episodes in June, CLIPAHOLICS had an underwhelming viewership. The remainder of the schedule was comprised of reruns.