Possible baseball preemptions force Fox to schedule opposite its NBC rival
“The X Factor” and “The Voice” are heading into their own battle round later this month.
Fox has scheduled its first live show of “The X Factor's” third season on Tuesday, Oct. 29 to avoid preemption by the MLB playoffs for a third week in a row. That places it in direct opposition against NBC's talent competition, which airs Mondays and Tuesdays.
Due to its baseball coverage, Fox won't air a new episode of “The X Factor” for the next two weeks. The hiatus arrives just as the talent show wrapped its “four chair challenge” and announced its Top 16 contenders.
So, in order to avoid being off-air for three weeks in a row if the playoffs go to Game 5 – which Fox considers a bad experience for fans – it scheduled its first live episode on that Tuesday because playoffs are slated to possibly continue on Wednesday, Oct. 30 and Thursday, Oct. 31, an individual with knowledge of the decision told TheWrap.
NBC had no comment on the scheduling decision.
This isn't the first time that the shows will go against each other on the same night. A rain delay last October during baseball preempted “The X Factor,” so that Fox had to schedule a re-airing of the episode for the following Tuesday against “The Voice.”
Then, of course, there was “The Voice's” decision to schedule a third night of the show that directly clashed with “The X Factor” Season 2 premiere in September of last year. That had executive producer and judge Simon Cowell boiling mad. In the end, “The Voice” won that bout with its 10.7 million viewers and 3.3 rating in the advertiser-coveted adults 18-to-49 demographic against “The X Factor's” 7.5 million and 2.7 in the 8 o'clock hour.
It would seem that “The X Factor” would actually take the biggest hit from Fox's scheduling decision. Thursday's episode of “X Factor” at 8 p.m. earned a 1.9/6 in the key demo and 6.3 million viewers. Meanwhile, the last performance episode of “The Voice” on Monday — Tuesday's episode was a recap of the blind auditions – earned a 4.5/12 and 14.3 million viewers, making it the highest-rated and most-watched show of the night.