This is what I’m thinking:
The Buffalo Bills game with the New York Jets and the Emmys had their best ratings in several years Sunday.
It didn’t appear to hurt the local ratings for the semifinal episode of “Breaking Bad,” which won the Emmy as best drama for its previous season.
But somebody had to lose, and that apparently was the series finale of Showtime’s “Dexter,” which ran opposite AMC’s “Breaking Bad.”
It wasn’t a fair fight, since AMC is a basic cable network and Showtime is a pay-cable network that doesn’t have close to the number of subscribers.
I haven’t watched the “Dexter” finale yet, giving me something in common with most Western New Yorkers.
The Sunday episode had a 0.5 rating – that’s right, a point-5 – equivalent to about 3,200 households here. That’s about 15 percent of the live “Breaking Bad” audience. The ratings for both undoubtedly will increase when DVR and On Demand viewing is added.
Nationally, the series finale of “Dexter” was the show’s highest-rated telecast ever and had the biggest audience ever – 2.8 million – for an original episode in Showtime history.
The season finale of “Ray Donovan” had a 0.8 – that’s a point-8 – equivalent to about 5,000 households here at 10 p.m. Sunday. Nationally, it delivered 1.4 million viewers.
The low ratings for “Dexter” and “Ray” also could be because some viewers haven’t caught up yet with episodes they missed when Showtime was off the air due to CBS’ battle with Time Warner Cable.
I was at the Bills-Jets game in New Jersey on Sunday, but I DVR’d Channel 2’s “Sports Extra” and heard host Adam Benigni say that the first battle of rookie quarterbacks goes to the Jets’ Geno Smith over the Bills’ EJ Manuel.
No argument here. But that is a little like comparing the ratings for “Breaking Bad” to those of “Dexter.” It wasn’t a fair competition.
Smith hit three long bombs to receivers after getting great protection from his offensive line and throwing against the Bills’ depleted secondary.
Manuel was sacked eight times and rarely saw a receiver with any separation, which led him to hold the ball too long.
If Manuel had the same amount of time as Smith and open receivers, he might have done as well. Smith’s passes seemed to be jump balls that could have been intercepted if the Bills’ regular cornerbacks had been playing.