What Explains The Real Housewives of Dallas' Slumping Ratings?

The latest member of the Housewives franchise isn't off to a great start.
The latest member of the Housewives franchise isn't off to a great start.

If you're not watching The Real Housewives of Dallas, then you might not be the only one.

Ratings for the Dallas-based show have decreased each week since its premiere. According to TV By The Numbers, a TV ratings site, about 1 million people tuned in to the premiere episode, then 920,000 for the second, and 828,000 for the third. The first two episodes had a 0.4 rating, which means 0.4 percent of people ages 18 to 49 tuned in. The third episode had a 0.3 rating.

To put that into perspective, The Real Housewives of Potomac, which also debuted this year, had a 0.9 rating for its premiere episode and then a 0.7 and 0.8 for number two and three, respectively. Rick Porter, editor of TV By The Numbers, says The Real Housewives of Atlanta is the highest-rated show in the franchise. (The show's April 10 episode had a 0.7 rating.) So it helps that Potomac trails Atlanta in Bravo's lineup, and on higher-viewed Sundays instead of Mondays.

Lara Spotts, head of development at Bravo, told the Observer before the series premiered that Dallas felt like a natural addition to the Housewives franchise.

“We felt like we were very coastal. A lot of our shows were in New York and LA. We’d fished around in Miami a little bit, but our audience didn’t really connect with the people we found," Spotts said.

Dallas, on the other hand, had all the ingredients. "Dallas seemed like a really exciting and unexpected city to find Bravo-type personalities," Spotts said. "What that means is we look for people who obviously are larger than life, who typically don’t have a filter — they have a sophisitication and sometimes even their own lexicon, their own way of speaking — and we found that in Dallas."

She added that the Dallas Housewives cast is made up of comedians, loyal friendships, a fallen hero — everything Bravo looks for in a cast.

“When you watch this series, you think, 'I wanna live with them for the next five, six, seven seasons.'”

On the contrary, it's not clear that many people do.


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