‘Kitten Bowl’ Chases ‘Puppy Bowl’ Up Ratings Tree, Falls Shy With 1 Million Viewers (Updated)

'Kitten Bowl' Chases 'Puppy Bowl' Up Ratings Tree, Falls Shy With 1 Million Viewers (Updated)

The 3-hour celebration of felines couldn't catch up to Animal Planet's 2-hour canine competition

Hallmark Channel scored with the debut of its “Kitten Bowl,” which drew an average of 1 million viewers during the competition's Super Bowl Sunday premiere.

The first run of the cable network's newest annual tradition aired from 12 p.m. – 3 p.m. Counting the telecast's three encores, the “Kitten Bowl” reached a total 6.1 million viewers P2+. The program, part of the network's advocacy campaign “Pet Project,” outperformed the timeslot average from a year ago in households (41 percent); adults 25-54 (39 percent); and women 25-54 (14 percent).

“Kitten Bowl” brought Hallmark Channel its highest total audience ever in the time period on Super Bowl Sunday.

Also read: Puppy Bowl Hits Ratings High With Latest Canine Competition

Of course, the special was not the only four-pawed game in town. “Kitten Bowl” put up a fight against the veteran furry counter-programming — Animal Planet's “Puppy Bowl X.” The 10th anniversary of the canine competition earned 3.3 million viewers in its 3 p.m. – 5 p.m. premiere. The 12-hour block roped in 13.5 million viewers, a record for the program.

The “Kitten Bowl” was hosted by Beth Stern, TV personality, national spokesperson for North Shore Animal League America and Howard Stern's wife, with commentary by New York Yankees announcer John Sterling. Special appearances included Regis Philbin, Hoda Kotb, Rachael Ray, Lisa Vanderpump, Rocco Dispirito, Nicky Hilton, Chuck Nice, Bob Harper, and more.

Also read: Animal Planet Calls Hallmark Channel's ‘Puppy Bowl’ Rip-Off a ‘Copy Cat’

“We're thrilled with the performance of our inaugural broadcast of Kitten Bowl,” Bill Abbott, president and chief executive office, Crown Media Family Networks, said in a statement. “The show clearly resonated with viewers and took social media by storm, trending on Twitter much of the day. We are extremely proud that all 71 of the kitten athletes who participated found loving homes, while Hallmark Channel further raised awareness of the epidemic of pet homelessness in our country.”

“Kitten Bowl” is executive produced by JD Roth, Todd Nelson, Adam Kaloustian and Brant Pinvidic of Eyeworks USA (previously 3 Ball Productions) whose credits include “Biggest Loser” (NBC) and “My Cat From Hell” (Animal Planet), among others. Jesse Drollette co-executive produced.

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story compared “Kitten Bowl”‘s unduplicated audience (3.2 million) with “Puppy Bowl”‘s P2+ average audience (3.3 million). It has been corrected to reflect the more apples-to-apples comparison, which widens the viewership gap between the programs. TheWrap regrets the error.

  • Kathryn Johnson

    Actually…the FIRST article statistics is the more apples to apples comparison and is the accurate one. Comparing the kitten bowl's 3.2 mil viewers to the puppy bowl's AVERAGE 3.3 mil viewers is most accurate, and you have nothing to apologize for. Yes…the puppy bowl rated high this particular day, but that means nothing overall, b/c you cannot compare a data set with only ONE VALUE (the kitten bowl) to a data set with MULTIPLE values (the puppy bowl) and have it mean anything UNLESS you FIRST bring data set #1 to a single point reflective value, which is what the first analysis did.

    For example, when comparing two data sets…if data set #1 has 100 sample values and data set #2 has only one value…you MUST convert data set #1 into a SINGLE DATA POINT that reflects all data sets, THEN compare data set #2 to that value; OR calculate the slope of the line for data set #1, then plot the value from data set #2 on that line; OR you do a chi square or t-test analysis…which is basically a mathematically obsessive way of doing the same thing. It compares the data set value of #2 to #1's functional progression data set overall. It calculates the actual “weight” or “pull” that the value of data set #2 has on data set #1. AND…if you REALLY wanted to be accurate…you would compare the statistical importance of number of kitten bowl viewers to number of hallmark viewers; number of puppy bowl viewers to number of Animal Planet viewers, then compare overall increases or decreases of network statistics to find out which show had the actual greater data pull. Got it? :D Good.

    Bottom line…comparing the kitten bowl's 3.2 mil viewers to the puppy bowl's AVERAGE 3.3 mil viewers is most accurate. For a debut show…that's good ratings when an incumbent popular show is still running strong. That's less than 1% difference. Bottom line…the first article is the correct one.