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Men In Blazers TV Show is a Ratings Rollercoaster on NBCSN

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Depending on which way you look at the numbers, the soccer cult TV show Men In Blazers is either a ratings disaster or a boost to NBCSN’s late night and early morning programming. The truth probably lies somewhere in between.

After launching in September, the show averaged just 30,000 viewers for its first 3 episodes with a low of 24,000 watching its live September 22 episode. Since then, the numbers have improved but they’ve been incredibly inconsistent.

In November, MIB’s Monday 10-10:30pm ET timeslot averaged 78,000 viewers, while December’s 10-10:30pm timeslot dropped to an average of 52,750 — with a record low of 23,000 viewers tuning in for the December 1st episode.

READ — Review of Men In Blazers TV Show: The Mystery Science Theater of Soccer

The most viewed first-viewing of a Men In Blazers episode, so far, was the November 10 episode when 95,000 viewers tuned in. In subsequent weeks since then, the viewing numbers have been all over the place with 61,000 (11/24), 23,000 (12/1), 69,000 (12/8), 73,000 (12/15) and 46,000 (12/22).

However, the viewing numbers aren’t all doom and gloom because the re-runs of the Men In Blazers TV show are doing better than the first broadcasts. For example, 143,000 people tuned into the December 1 midnight ET re-run, while 128,000 watched the midnight ET rerun on November 10.

But then the rollercoaster ride hit again when just 14,000 tuned in to the midnight ET airing of the show on December 15, and 48,000 watched the rerun of the most recent show at midnight on December 22.

Needless to say, the viewing numbers for the Men In Blazers TV show are all over the place.

In speaking with fans of Men In Blazers, the consensus among the majority of people I’ve spoken to is that the show hasn’t adapted as well to television. There’s still enthusiasm for the audio podcast, but there’s a lot of room for improvement in the original show that is condensed to less than 30 minutes for television.

One of the biggest challenges for NBC Sports is that there’s no reason for soccer fans to tune in to watch the show live. The show is recorded on a Monday afternoon and then aired later that night. The one addition to the show that would make it a hit on television is a live call-in feature, allowing GFOPs (Great Friend of the Pod) to call in and ask questions of Michael Davies and Roger Bennett. However, with only a 30 minute show (and much less when you consider the commercial breaks), there isn’t enough time to squeeze in calls from listeners unless NBCSN is willing to expand the show from 30 to 60 minutes.

In the meantime, Bennett and Davies will prepare to ride the rollercoaster once again when Men In Blazers returns to NBCSN on January 12.

H/T @Spurs_US.

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12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. MIB Fan

    November 29, 2021 at 9:55 am

    Two out of ten comments in 2015 disliked MIB, guess that makes it “panned by critics” in 2021. #TakeThatGloria

  2. canspur

    October 29, 2018 at 6:44 pm

    got to be the worst show I have ever seen. tuned in after the spurs v man city game for first time and could not believe these two imbeciles were actually on air. 2 mins of this was 2 mins too much will never watch again!

  3. Mark

    July 5, 2015 at 4:12 pm

    I love the show, had no idea it started as a podcast. I would pay a monthly fee to watch this show. I can tell you the scheduling is a huge problem with NHL hockey often extending into the shows airtime.
    NBCSN needs to advertise the show.

  4. Rich

    May 25, 2015 at 2:24 am

    It’s my favorite scoccer recap show! NBC needs to stick with the same time slot and viewership will grow. Maybe just my opinion but after Match of the day would be great time for MIB as I would like to finish with a laugh. NBC needs to be patient and they will be rewarded. Either way I DVR the show.

  5. Eplnfl

    January 7, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    Love the show. I think most fans of the EPL do too. It’s really something that enhances our feel for the English game.

    I think NBC needs to let the audience grow and get used to the time slot. Also when it’s live September through December it’s up against Monday Night Football. That’s a hard time for any show to draw big viewing numbers. Let’s see how they do now that the NFL is done on Mondays nights.

    • Kevin

      January 8, 2015 at 11:29 am

      Good point re: going against MNF. During NFL season, they might have to move the show to Tuesday or something, perhaps as a leadout from NHL coverage.

  6. Smokey Bacon

    January 6, 2015 at 8:37 pm

    Not for the first time, I feel you are damning MIB with faint praise. Its a good show in my opinion. Do those numbers include DVR?

    30 minutes is about right. The interview format works and they have quite a following online. I hope they get the opportunity to continue doing their stuff.

  7. Toby

    January 6, 2015 at 7:48 pm

    I just don’t think it works on US TV as the show because it is too short and sanitised compared to their podcast show.The podcast works because the format gives deep soccer analysis using low brow and high brow amusing cultural references but also due to the articulate and intelligent nature of the their podcast fans, GFOP correspondence is also very funny and they very interesting guests. But the TV show is reduced to them trying to make lame jokes about clips and downton Abbey actors as a guest who don’t really like football and just promoting a product.

    But one podcast you guys should check out related to soccer is the Talksport Johnny Vaughan weekend warm up. Download every episode because it is belly ache funny.

  8. GallipoliVC

    January 6, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    While I am not the best grammarian, I do believe you meant somewhere in between not someone. Just a friendly pointer.Anyways, about MIB, at first I really hated it, during the WC they rminded me of drunk frat guys. However, after watching them on NBCSN, they started to grow on me, or possibly I have started going crazy. Either way, I know fine them enjoyable sort of like Chris Berman on ESPN in years gone by. They do need to package it with other programming. I mean car auctions are not an ideal lead in.

  9. twitter_pkickorlando

    January 6, 2015 at 2:20 pm

    What about making it an on-demand, dare I say it “podcast” and just make it available at intervals that make sense if the reruns are doing well. It probably means the intended audience is already used to chasing MIB at the time of their choosing anyways.

  10. MrTuktoyaktuk

    January 6, 2015 at 1:39 pm

    Might do better if grouped with some other shoulder programming, like the PL’s Review Show. I can see why NBCSN didn’t want to invest a full hour but having the extra time might make the show a bit more accessible. More time for the segments with the guests would help.

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