Now I will admit that I have yet to see Disney/Titmouse’s latest series, Motorcity, but what I have heard has been mostly positive, so I’m giving it the benefit of the doubt here. Last week, I cam upon this post over on Tumblr (I know, I know, grain of salt etc.) that extols fans to watch and talk about the show. The reason is simple; :”It’s not doing very well”.
This apparent lack of success is measured thus:
According to wikipedia, the show only scraped up half a million views for its premiere episode, and since then each new episode premiere has averaged at around 0.3 million views. That’s only 300,000 people an episode, and reruns are probably getting even fewer views, as the fanbase is tiny and almost every single episode has been leaked onto the internet prior to airtime. The show’s on hiatus right now and could be in serious danger of getting canceled soon.
In a country of 300 million, 300,000 does seem like an appallingly low number. However, things are not as bad as the post’s author makes it out to be.
A cursory glance around the interwebs reveals that Disney XD (the channel on which Motorcity is broadcast) actually doesn’t have an audience much larger than 300,000. In fact, that’s about as high as its ever gotten (Q2 2012 viewer numbers was 390,000). So in fact, Motorcity is performing pretty much in line with the channel’s overall performance.
So if the show is performing as good as the network itself, there is little reason to freak out over the ratings is there? No, there isn’t. Now naturally more viewers is better, but networks always aim for a specific number (that is never known unless the show tanks) and in this instance, I would doubt they were aiming for a million viewers for the simple reason that the network itself doesn’t support that many viewers.
What certainly isn’t known is how viewers are faring on other platforms such as DVR or streaming. Those numbers are likely to be of much more value because as yesterday’s post alluded to, many young ‘uns spend a lot of time watching content online, far away from the Nielson box.
So to conclude, Motorcity’s viewer numbers are not so bad as to get in a tizzy over. If the show was to be cancelled over low ratings, it would have done so already.
UPDATE: So it would appear that the show is now officially cancelled, but don’t forget that this post was written months ago at a time when all the indicators pointed to a successful season. Remember that networks can cancel a show at any time and for practically any reason. By all accounts, Motorcity was performing commendably.