CBC was smart to pull Kim’s Convenience out of Tuesday’s suicide slot. The Toronto Blue Jays exciting Wild Card win was a grand slam home run for Sportsnet, drawing an overnight, estimated 4,017,000 viewers.
That makes it the fifth biggest audience in Sportsnet’s history, behind only Jays’ playoff games last fall vs. Kansas City and Texas. Games 6 vs. Kansas City holds the all-time record at 5.2M viewers.
The Jays overtime win had a negative impact on the overnight ratings for the season premieres of two other CBC series: the Rick Mercer Report (557,000) and This Hour Has 22 Minutes (516,000). It will be interesting to see how big a lift those shows get from PVR use once the totals come in. The repeat of the Wanda Sykes Just for Laughs comedy special CBC threw into the Kim’s slot pulled just 290,000.
The big game took a swing at the other networks, too. The season premiere of The Flash on CTV failed to crack a million in the overnights on CTV (947,000). Global’s NCIS was down but still potent at 1,644,000 overnight viewers.
Kim’s Convenience has been re-scheduled to premiere with back-to-back episodes next Tuesday, Oct. 11 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
For the story behind CBC’s decision to move the show — and, in the process, turn lemons into lemonade — follow this link to the story I wrote Wednesday for The Canadian Press. Read how CBC programming boss Sally Catto pulled the trigger on the move after huddling with her promotions and marketing team as well as Kim’s executive producer and former CTV and CBC programming boss Ivan Fecan.
“I have to give full credit to the CBC,” says Fecan, more used to calling the shots in these tricky scheduling situations. “Sally Catto thought this through, spent much of Sunday night agonizing over whether to pull the trigger or not.”
“In pulling the trigger,” says Catto, “I had the benefit of a stellar marketing team and also a producer, who happened, at one time, to be a brilliant programmer. Ivan and I had many invaluable conversations about this move.”
Also get the behind-the-scenes details on the timely Kim’s Convenience — Blue Jays promotional spot (above) that aired during the game. Featuring Paul Sun-Hyung Lee as Mr. Kim, it was pulled together in less than a week.