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‘Nashville’ Season 5 Premiere a Ratings Success for CMT

Nashville Season 5 premiere ratings
Frederick M. Brown, Getty Images

Nashville is doing well on its new network. The Season 5 premiere episode — the first to debut on CMT — earned solid ratings.

The Nashville Season 5 premiere — a two-hour episode — aired on CMT on Jan. 5. TVLine reports that the episode notched a 0.8 demo rating when it aired on CMT, Encore and Nick @ Nite; almost 2 million viewers tuned in. Nashville‘s Season 5 premiere earned a 0.5 rating on CMT alone, with 1.2 million viewers checking it out.

Nashville‘s CMT-only rating is nearly triple the network’s prime-time average. The TV drama’s premiere is now the network’s most-watch original series premiere since 2012’s premiere episode of Redneck Island.

But how do those numbers compare to Nashville‘s ratings during its time on ABC? That 0.8 rating is down just one-tenth from the show’s Season 4 finale, the final episode to air on ABC, and down 20 percent from its Season 4 ratings average. About double the number of viewers (4 million) watched that Season 4 finale episode when it aired on ABC; at the time, CMT had not yet picked the show up, so that episode was poised to be Nashville‘s series finale.

While CMT is no doubt conscious of Nashville‘s ratings, network executives, as well as the show’s cast and crew, have been vocal about the fact that CMT is the perfect home for the show.

“To tell you the truth, I’m happier to be on CMT,” says showrunner Marshall Herskovitz, adding that it’s important to him to highlight “the depth and the complexity of the [characters’] relationships instead of just feeling you needed to have incident piling on incident.”

CMT picked up Nashville for its fifth season in early June, following ABC’s cancellation of the show in mid-May, and thanks in part to fan demand.

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NEXT: A Recap of the 'Nashville' Season 5 Premiere

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