Monday, April 15, 2024

Sunday Cable Ratings: In a Race Among Quality Scripted Shows, “Billions” Beats “I Know This Much” But Michael Jordan Trumps All


I am celebrating a victory for my favorite show that can be seen on a television set.

“Billions,” now in season 5, won a three way race Sunday night at 9pm among quality dramas.

To wit: “Billions” scored 568,000 viewers. On HBO, Mark Ruffalo playing twins in “I Know This Much is True” had 313,000 people tuning in. On AMC, “Killing Eve” scored just 368,000. The latter show had a simultaneous broadcast on BBC AMerica, with 340,000.

But on a single channel, “Billions” won hands down. So we win, and I accept the award on behalf of Bobby Axelrod, Chuck Rhoades, Wendy Rhoades, and all their minions.

Of course, these three shows were low ratings-getters on Sunday night cable. All the action was on ESPN, where 6 million plus people tuned into the “Last Dance” documentary about Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls. That’s the rating of a network show.  Twice as many men as women watched the Bulls saga. But that’s a documentary.

On TBS, “Snowpiercer” debuted with almost 2 million viewers. But TNT comes with your cable, as opposed to Showtime and HBO, which are subscription channels. It’s a great showing for “Snowpiercer,” and I was thrilled to see it finally appear after long delays and lots of hype. Jennifer Connelly, Daveed Diggs, and especially Mickey Sumner head a cool cast.

But “Billions” is thriving, which is nice to see. I’m enjoying seeing Bobby getting knocked around a little by Corey Stoll’s new guy tech billionaire, and Julianna Margulies is about to play a big part in Chuck’s life, I feel. Looking forward to the next episode like crazy.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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