After decades of airing "Guiding Light," CBS last month decided to trade in the long-running soap for what’s behind curtain one — specifically, a new version of "Let’s Make a Deal."
So how’s that working out for the Eye?
Well, after two weeks of episodes, "Deal" is drawing a few more viewers than "GL" overall, up 7 percent in overall households (1.6/5) vs. the soap’s 2008-09 average (1.5/5).
But it looks like most of those extra viewers are older. In the key daytime demographics of women 18-49 (0.7/4) and 25-54 (0.8/5), "Deal" is down 13 percent and 20 percent, respectively, compared with the "GL" average. The gameshow is flat vs. "GL" with women 18-34.
Not surprisingly, because it’s not a soap opera, "Deal" has ticked up a tenth of a ratings point in all the key male demos.
CBS also put out a press release today noting that "The Price Is Right" had its best ratings in nearly a year last week. While the network didn’t make any connections, "Deal" now leads in to "Price" in many markets, so the new kid could be helping "Price" find some more viewers.
Of course, it’s far too soon to say how "Deal" will end up performing for CBS long-term. The network hasn’t done much to promote the show, choosing instead to focus on its primetime launches.
And it’s probably worth noting here that game shows tend to be cheaper to produce than soap operas (though makers of daytime dramas are churning things out on a shoestring these days).
Bottom line: The new "Deal" isn’t a zonk, but it’s not a breakout hit, either.