“The Good Doctor” is off to a pretty great start on ABC. The freshman medical drama is the fifth-best entertainment series of the fall season among adults 18-49 (so, not counting sports) — fourth if you ignore “Young Sheldon,” which has only aired its series premiere thus far.
The Sony/ABC medical drama’s 3.2 demo rating, which includes a week’s worth of delayed viewing where available, places it just two-tenths of a Nielsen point behind ABC’s top-rated show, “Grey’s Anatomy” (3.4). NBC’s sophomore powerhouse “This Is Us” (4.4) is the only broadcast network drama that does better than those two in the age-range most attractive to advertisers.
Sitcom “The Big Bang Theory” (4.1) sits between “Grey’s” and “Us.”
The data gets even better for Freddie Highmore’s “Bates Motel” follow-up when including viewers of all ages.
Isolating just Live + 7 Day numbers through the first three reportable weeks of the season, “The Good Doctor,” which is an import from South Korea TV, is actually the most-watched drama on broadcast TV with an average of 18.5 million total viewers per episode.
That bests “This Is Us” (18.1 million), “NCIS” (17.4 million), and crushes “Grey’s Anatomy” (11.9 million).
“Big Bang Theory” (20 million) and the asterisk-riddled “Young Sheldon” (22.5 million) technically top the charts overall — but again, those are comedies. By the very nature of the genre, sitcoms only have to hold a viewer for half of the time a drama does — but really, that “BBT” universe is just its own unbeatable beast.
Regardless of genre, “The Good Doctor,” which hails from producer David Shore (“House”), is the most-watched 10 o’clock show on television. Not surprisingly, it adds the most overall audience members via DVR and on-demand viewing, with an average of 7.5 million latecomers per episode. That’s a 69 percent lift, which is huge when you consider the show’s giant starting point of 11 million “live” viewers.
As a matter of fact, only “The Gifted,” “The Orville,” “Designated Survivor” and “How to Get Away With Murder” add more audience members in the days following an episode’s first airing — and those shows all come from a much lower starting point, which helps when calculating percentages.
In other words, the prognosis is quite bright for Monday series “The Good Doctor” — ABC executives didn’t have to attend med school to know this one needed a full season.