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SGU‘s Season One Ratings Report

Wednesday - June 16, 2010
Category: RATINGS | Tags:

SGU "Space" (111) - RushThe numbers are in for the final episodes of Stargate Universe‘s first season.

After drawing 1.454 million viewers (Live + Same Day) for “Subversion,” the 2-part finale kicked off with a surprising series low:  1.178 million for “Incursion, Part 1,” according to  But the show rallied back 25 percent with 1.469 million viewers for last Friday’s installment, nearly on par with the number of viewers who tuned in for the mid-season premiere in April.

Here’s the full viewership chart for Season One, with the percent change from the previous new episode:

EPISODE (air date) VIEWERS (million) CHANGE
Air, Part 1 (Oct. 2) 2.346
Air, Part 2 (Oct. 2) 2.346
Air, Part 3 (Oct. 9) 2.447 (season high) + 3%
Darkness (Oct. 16) 2.099 – 14%
Light (Oct. 23) 2.015 – 4%
Water (Oct. 30) 1.974 – 2%
Earth (Nov. 6) 1.626 – 18%
Time (Nov. 13) 1.802 + 11%
Life (Nov. 20) 1.891 + 5%
Justice (Dec. 2) 1.340 – 29%
EPISODE (air date) VIEWERS (million) CHANGE
Space (Apr. 2) 1.486 + 11%
Divided (Apr. 9) 1.600 + 8%
Faith (Apr. 16) 1.422 – 11%
Human (Apr. 23) 1.313 – 8%
Lost (Apr. 30) 1.587 + 21%
Sabotage (May 7) 1.391 – 12%
Pain (May 14) 1.554 + 12%
Subversion (May 21) 1.454 – 6%
Incursion, Part 1 (June 4) 1.178 (season low) – 19%
Incursion, Part 2 (June 11) 1.469 + 25%

(Note that there was a 4-month break between the first and second halves of this season.)

SGU commonly sees a big lift in viewer totals when DVR “Live + 7 Days” viewing is accounted for. It will largely be up to Syfy Channel to release that data, however. The first half of the season averaged 1.99 million viewers per week on Friday nights, and 2.57 million viewers with DVR data factored in (story). The second half of the season averaged 1.44 million on Friday night.

The overall season average is 1.717 million viewers per week (Like + Same Day).

The 37 percent drop between the first and last episodes notwithstanding, the numbers show an overall steady season. Following the 2-hour premiere, SGU‘s viewership dropped ten out of 18 weeks and rose eight out of 18 weeks. In both halves of the season, the second aired episode was the highest-rated (“Air, Part 3” and “Divided”).

Universe has already been renewed for a full, 20-episode second season, of course.  The ratings for the Fall 2010 episodes will influence whether or not Syfy wants a third year.

Stick with GateWorld for the very latest!  We’re updating the episode guide and the Stargate Omnipedia all summer long with data from Season One, and keeping tabs on what’s to come in Season Two.  And don’t miss a new series of exclusive interviews with cast members from SGU, Atlantis, and SG-1 in the weeks to come!

Darren created GateWorld in 1999, and today is the owner and managing editor. He lives in the Seattle area with his wife and three children. (More)

COMMENTS (87):Rules | Report Comment | Trackback

  • How come “Incursion part 1: has a +19%?

    Also, didn’t Stargate Atlantis average like 1.7 Million viewers in their last season?

    Looks like the producers might need to change things. They lost a lot of viewers, ouch.

  • So, I am a little confused… How can Incursion Part 1 have an increase +19.% while being the season lowest?

    Or am I reading those numbers wrong.

    Subversion (May 21) 1.454 – 6%
    Incursion, Part 1 (June 4) 1.178 (season low) + 19%
    Incursion, Part 2 (June 11) 1.469 + 25%

  • I really love that 25% bump at the end and especially love that despite so many heaping scorn on the episode “Life”, that it had a 5% jump.

    I do have to admit that ratings stuff usually makes my brain hurt but still, grins aplenty :D

  • I too am confused by the positive change down to he season low. Huh??

  • I’m actually happy about this. It took me forever, but by Incursion, Part 1 I finally came to love the show. I dont know how I will feel about S2, but at least now I can say I will be there. :)

  • Maybe the “change” column measures quality change, i.e. Incursion p.1 was 19% better than Subversion.

  • if this show costs a lot more than the other stargate shows. then how are these ratings acceptable?

  • Does any of this count the itunes downloads? I’m never home Friday night so I download the episodes. I’m actually happy Universe will be moving to a new night, I may actually see the episodes when they air more often.

  • I would say that the SGU season 1 average is 1.684 million viewers. Air, Part 1 and Part 2 was ONE broadcast. You usually don’t count a broadcast double.

    “The series averaged 1.99 million viewers per week on Friday nights, and 2.57 million viewers with DVR data factored in (story).”

    This sentence is confusing and at worst misleading. Those are only the numbers of the FIRST HALF of the season and not the series average at the current time. It shouldn’t be necessary to click the provided link to get the real meaning of the numbers! And again I wouldn’t count Air, Part 1 and Part 2 double. So the live + SD average of season 1.0 is 1.949 million viewers.

    The live + 7 numbers for “Space” to “Pain” are also already known. The 7 episodes got on average 2.0 million viewers.

    All in all I don’t understand how you can speak of a “steady season”. A steady season is for me a season, where the ratings are stable and there isn’t a negative trend. Season 1.5 lost on average more than 500 thousand viewers live + SD and also live + 7 in comparison to season 1.0. The second half is clearly MUCH WORSE on average than the first half.

    The 5th season of SGA got an average of 1.6 million viewers live + SD. The second half of it got even on average 1.7 million viewers! SGU’s season 1.5 looks bad in comparison to that. SGU should perform MUCH better than a series in its 5th season.

    ALL season finals of SGA were MUCH BETTER than the season final of SGU, even the finals of the last two seasons.

    Live + SD

    SGA: episode 4×19 -> 1.7 million viewers
    SGA: episode 5×19 -> 1.7 million viewers
    SGU: episode 1×19 -> 1.2 million viewers

    SGA: episode 4×20 -> 2.1 million viewers
    SGA: episode 5×20 -> 2.0 million viewers
    SGU: episode 1×20 -> 1.5 million viewers

  • @ clbourge

    Itunes downloads aren’t included in the live + SD or live + 7 numbers.

  • The second half of Season one performed worse than SGA’s fifth season.
    No Stargate Season finale has ever received such low numbers.
    I don’t see how to spin these numbers in a positive light without making yourself really really dizzy.
    I would imagine if the numbers continue like this in the first half of the second season, the show will be cancelled.
    Perhaps the move to Tuesdays will be the thing that helps them regain the lost viewership, and for the fans of SGU, I hope so.
    I can hardly stop myself, however, for asking why oh why did they not continue SGA for a sixth and final season and either finish that show out properly or run the first season of SGU concurrently.
    Much of the bad feelings surrounding SGU could have been avoided with a little thought and sensitivity. I really do think it has cost them the franchise.

  • For anyone confused: It should be -19%

    I think counting Air as two episodes is valid as it got twice the air time which also means twice the commercials.

    One question: The ‘Live+SD’ ratings are often compared to SGA’s ratings. Are the numbers for SGA ‘Live+SD’ too?
    If they’re just ‘Live’ it’s apples and oranges…

  • Incursion season low, looks like a lot of people missed out on a great episode :/

    would rather have seen life or earth as season low

  • @xxxevilgrinxxx

    you said ” and especially love that despite so many heaping scorn on the episode “Life”, that it had a 5% jump.”

    followed by how you don’t understand stats well… obviously. the 5% jump is because people liked the last episode. To see the effect of Life you have to look at how many people tuned in the next episode (this shows their reaction to the episdoe) and after life there was a 29% drop in viewers. From which it never recoverd.

  • What about taking into account those of us that download the 720p episodes to watch at our leisure? How do they factor that in? Yeah, exactly. I’ll bet programmes like Firefly would have stayed running if they could count real viewer numbers, not just those that have the access to and the time to spare for live broadcasting or fancy schmancy DVR.

    The series picked up at the end. Hopefully the viewer count will go up at the start of next season.

  • Darren

    Unfortunately, networks don’t actually renew shows based on how many people they think are watching them. They renew shows based on how many people are watching the commercials in them.

    Online viewing, whether legal or illegal, paid or free, adds nothing to the network’s viewer head count. They’re not interested in counting us. In fact, I’d think that the higher the number of people watching somewhere else, the worse it is for the show. Syfy spends a lot of money to have SGU as exclusively as possible in the current climate.

  • These are embarrassing ratings for the first season of a new Stargate show. Simply embarrassing. The move to Tuesday is not an effort to recharge the show, it’s SyFy dumping it in a graveyard.

  • I hate this I really do. IMHO SGU is a great show and these numbers are very concerning. I really want SGU to succeed but I seriously doubt it will last past season 2.

  • does this take into account the ratings in other countries outside the USA?

  • @Imitation Tofu:

    Uh, I think you mixed your words up. Syfy is moving SGU from the graveyard and placing it in a slot that provides the show a higher chance to succeed. Friday nights are pretty much the graveyard nights. Tuesday nights have a much higher percentage of people and households watching. Now, the move can backfire, but to say the least, it is actually worth the change. If SGU continues to stay in a dead viewing night, it will unfortunately fail, without a doubt. So, it seems like the move is a good risk. It opens up a stronger chance of the show succeeding.

    Honestly, until we see the ratings for the first three episodes of season two, I ain’t worrying about the show’s renewal. The show will be on airing on a new night, a night by the way without being too repetitive, has a higher person and household percentage. If the ratings for the first three episodes of season two remain low, then that is a time to worry. Until then, I am simply going to enjoy my summer, and not become too concern with the show.

    Oh, also if the show only gets two seasons, then so be it. That’s my attitude anymore. I would rather have two seasons of something that, in my humble opinion, is great, rather than nothing. I would like the show to go on longer, but if I get two seasons, it won’t be a total lost cause in my eyes.

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