NBC may have enjoyed a record-breaking weekend with their coverage of the Super Bowl on Sunday (February 5, 2012), but their new musical theatre show Smash may be showing signs of weakness, after just one show.
NBC broadcast the TV coverage of this year's Super Bowl, which saw the New York Giants topple the Patriots by 21-17 and was rewarded with viewer figures that have landed it with the accolade of being the most watched TV show ever. And on Monday night (February 6, 2012) NBC screened the second episode of the new series of The Voice, which averaged 17.7 million viewers for the two hour show. Directly after the The Voice, came the premiere episode of Smash, starring Megan Hilty, Katherine Mcphee and Angelica Huston. The musical theatre-based show, which has been described as 'Glee for grownups' averaged 11.5 million viewers but according to the Los Angeles Times, the programme lost "nearly one-fifth" of its viewers between the first half hour and the second.
Scott Collins, for LA Times, explains that network executives in the US will ideally hope to keep 70 - 80% of the audience for a show that follows a big hit like The Voice so it remains to be seen whether or not smash can live up to its title and be the hit that NBC so clearly wants it to be. The network will have invested a great deal of advertising money on the show, which benefitted from a sought-after commercial slot during the Super Bowl broadcast. One of its main stars, Megan Hilty told an interviewer for Wall Street Journal that she had not been affected by the sense of pressure surrounding the success of the show.