The CW’s Arrow had an abs-olutely impressive debut on Wednesday night, delivering 4.02 million total viewers and a 1.3 demo rating — the network’s most watched episode of anything in three years and its highest rated drama bow since Nikita in 2010. (Last year, Ringer did 2.7 mil/1.2 while Hart of Dixie opened to 1.8 mil/0.7.)
Leading out of Arrow, Supernatural did 2.6 mil/1.0, up 37 and 25 percent from its premiere. Nice.
Turning to the night’s pair of 10 o’clock debuts: ABC’s Nashville drew 9 million viewers and a 2.8 rating, trailing CSI (10.6 mil/2.6) in total audience and down 11 and 15 percent from Revenge‘s Wednesday-at-10 series launch, but well above the initial numbers for NBC’s Chicago Fire, which placed a distant third in the hour with 6.4 mil/1.9.
Nashville stands as ABC’s best drama debut since Once Upon a Time (which delivered last season’s highest rated freshman drama launch). And for comparison’s sake, The Whole Truth premiered to 4.9 mil/1.5 in the Wednesdays-at-10 slot while Off the Map opened with 7.5 mil/2.2.
Chicago Fire, meanwhile, built on its SVU lead-in by a tenth in the demo and improved on NBC’s prior-season average in the time slot by 19 percent.
Elsewhere on the night….
* Fox’s The X Factor was flat week-to-week with 9.4 million viewers and a 3.4 rating.
* Of ABC’s comedies, The Middle (7.8 mil/2.4 rating) was up 9 percent in the demo, The Neighbors (6.3 mil/1.9) was flat and the double-pump of Modern Family averaged 12.1 mil/4.8, down 16 and 13 percent from its season premiere. “Not a Real Man”!
* CBS’ Survivor (9.6 mil/2.6) was down 8 and 13 percent, while Criminal Minds was flat at 11.4 mil/3.0. CSI (10.6 mil/2.6) ticked up a tenth in the demo.
* NBC’s Animal Practice (3.9 mil/1.1) and Guys With Kids (4.2 mil/1.4) both dropped double digits, and SVU (6.2 mil/1.8) was down 14 percent.
What were you tuned into this Wednesday night? Next week: American Horror Story: Asylum premieres.