Scandal vs. The Blacklist: Here's How the First Night of TV's Thursday Face-Off Fared

Michael Schneider
From Left: Eric Liebowitz/NBC; Eric McCandless/ABC

The Blacklist Vs Scandal

First, the good news for NBC's The Blacklist: The James Spader drama moved to its new Thursday home last night and won the 9 p.m. hour (and the night) in total viewers – the first time an NBC show has been the No. 1 drama on Thursday night since the ER finale in April 2009.

The Blacklist episode – the second half of the two-parter that began after the Super Bowl ­– was also NBC's most-watched Thursday scripted series since that ER finale. The Blacklist is also one of the most time-delayed shows on TV, as it regularly scores a huge bump in DVR/VOD viewing. (NBC is projecting the show will jump from 9.9 million to 16.1 million in Live + 7 ratings.)

That's a promising start. But nonetheless, The Blacklist won't find things easy moving forward, as ABC's Scandal is a formidable competitor – and indeed, still beat The Blacklist in the demo that counts most, Adults 18-49. (NBC has to be more concerned with new drama Allegiance, which opened to Ratings Siberia.) The Blacklist's 18-49 number will also get a huge lift once time-shifted viewing is included, but for now, without the help of a The Voice lead-in, the show's Thursday night 2.3 rating was a season low.

So how did the newly competitive 9 p.m. timeslot play out? Scandal won most of the demos – but not all, as The Blacklist fared particularly well with men and teens. Here's how the night broke down in key measurements, according to fast nationals. (Final ratings will be out later today.)

Total Viewers
The Blacklist (NBC) 9.9 million
Scandal (ABC) 9.5 million
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 8.8 million
Backstrom (Fox) 3.6 million
WINNER: The Blacklist

Adults 18-49
Scandal (ABC) 3.1
The Blacklist (NBC) 2.3
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 2.1
Backstrom (Fox) 1.0
WINNER: Scandal

Adults 25-54
Scandal (ABC) 3.6
The Blacklist (NBC) 3.2
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 3.1
Backstrom (Fox) 1.2
WINNER: Scandal

Adults 18-34
Scandal (ABC) 2.7
The Blacklist (NBC) 1.1
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 1.1
Backstrom (Fox) 0.6
WINNER: Scandal

Persons 12-34
Scandal (ABC) 2.2
The Blacklist (NBC) 1.1
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 1.0
Backstrom (Fox) 0.7
WINNER: Scandal

Teens 12-17
The Blacklist (NBC) 1.1
Scandal (ABC) 0.9
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 0.9
Backstrom (Fox) 0.8
WINNER: The Blacklist

And here's the gender breakdown, leading credence to NBC's hope that The Blacklist might attract demos – particularly men – who might not be watching Scandal.

Women 18-49
Scandal (ABC) 4.7
The Blacklist (NBC) 2.5
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 2.4
Backstrom (Fox) 1.0
WINNER: Scandal

Men 18-49
The Blacklist (NBC) 2.2
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 1.8
Scandal (ABC) 1.5
Backstrom (Fox) 1.0
WINNER: The Blacklist

Women 25-54
Scandal (ABC) 5.3
The Blacklist (NBC) 3.4
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 3.3
Backstrom (Fox) 1.2
WINNER: Scandal

Men 25-54
The Blacklist (NBC) 2.9
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 2.8
Scandal (ABC) 1.8
Backstrom (Fox) 1.3
WINNER: The Blacklist

Women 18-34
Scandal (ABC) 3.9
The Blacklist (NBC) 1.2
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 1.2
Backstrom (Fox) 0.7
WINNER: Scandal

Men 18-34
Scandal (ABC) 1.4
The Blacklist (NBC) 1.1
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 1.1
Backstrom (Fox) 0.6
WINNER: Scandal

Females 12-34
Scandal (ABC) 3.2
The Blacklist (NBC) 1.1
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 1.1
Backstrom (Fox) 0.7
WINNER: Scandal

Males 12-34
Scandal (ABC) 1.2
The Blacklist (NBC) 1.2
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 1.0
Backstrom (Fox) 0.7
WINNER: Scandal and The Blacklist (Tie)

Females 12-17
Scandal (ABC) 1.1
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 1.1
The Blacklist (NBC) 0.9
Backstrom (Fox) 0.6
WINNER: Scandal and Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (Tie)

Males 12-17
The Blacklist (NBC) 1.4
Backstrom (Fox) 1.0
Scandal (ABC) 0.6
Two and a Half Men/Big Bang Theory repeat (CBS) 0.6
WINNER: The Blacklist

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