Between outrage over the way scenes in the trailers recreated moments from the UK original to the convoluted promotional messaging–how exactly was the premise of the show different from something like “Superbad”–“The Inbetweeners” gave industry analysts no reason to expect big things in the ratings Monday.
The actual result measures weakly even against those modest standards.
Industry sources are reporting that Monday’s premiere of MTV’s comedy adaptation garnered a mere 0.4 adults 18-49 rating with 913,000 viewers (Update: It appears the rating might actually have been a 0.3). Ratings for the persons 12-34 demographic, MTV’s prime target, were not immediately available, but given the fact that MTV did not issue a press release trumpeting the show’s performance, it seems unlikely “The Inbetweeners” was a slam dunk in that demo.
“Ridiculousness,” which led into the new series, drew a 0.7 rating with 1.6 million viewers.
While the series’ numbers are disappointing in comparison to recent performances from shows like “Teen Wolf” and “Awkward,” it should be noted that the viewership total was not too far below that of 2010’s “The Hard Times of RJ Berger.”
Though that show premiered in the coveted post-“Video Music Awards” timeslot, its first regularly-scheduled Monday night episode delivered only a 0.5 rating with 1,172,000 viewers. That show ended up earning a second season at MTV.
“Hard Times,” of course, also showed some ratings momentum as the season progressed, eventually reversing the downward trend that often plagues first-season series. For “The Inbetweeners” to warrant a renewal, it will likely need to not only prevent a decline in the coming weeks but actually attract new eyeballs through word-of-mouth.
Reviews of “The Inbetweeners” premiere were not as bad as they could have been, but the opening episode was not so acclaimed as to make positive buzz inevitable.