In its guest-star packed season three premiere at 9:00pm (ET/PT) last night, Lifetime’s comedic drama Drop Dead Diva reached new heights in a number of key demographics, becoming the program’s most watched season premiere in Adults 25-54 (1,558,000), Adults 18-49 (1,318,000), Women 25-54 (1,215,000) and Women 18-49 (998,000), according to Nielsen Research. In addition, last night’s episode is Drop Dead Diva’s second most-watched telecast ever among Adults 25-54, Adults 18-49 and Women 25-54 (behind the series’ 8/30/09 telecast).
Among Adults 25-54, Drop Dead Diva’s season three premiere posted strong growth against previous season debuts, including +7% versus last season’s premiere (1,452,000) and up 18% versus its season one premiere in 2009 (1,317,000). Last night’s episode was +38% compared to the year to-date time period average (1,133,000). Versus the year-ago time period average (1,256,000), the series was up 24%.
In Women 18-49, Drop Dead Diva, starring Brooke Elliott and Margaret Cho, was +4% versus its season two premiere and +26% against year-to-date-time period average, while in Women 25-54 it was up 10% and 38%, respectively; and in Adults 18-49 it was +3% and +28%.
Drop Dead Diva also averaged 2.9 million Total Viewers (2,856,000) in its return, up +17% versus year-to-date time period average. Its season three premiere last night is ad-supported cable’s number three original drama season premiere in 2011 among Women 25-54 (behind Army Wives and Law & Order: CI).
Drop Dead Diva tells the story of a shallow wannabe model who dies in a sudden accident only to find her soul resurfacing in the body of a brilliant, plus-size and recently deceased attorney, Jane. Produced by Sony Pictures Television, the series features breakout star Elliott (Wicked, Taboo), Cho (Dancing with the Stars, Notorious C.H.O.), Jackson Hurst (Living Proof), Kate Levering (Cashmere Mafia), April Bowlby (Two and a Half Men), Josh Stamberg (Lie to Me) and Ben Feldman (The Perfect Man).
In Drop Dead Diva’s return, entertainer Paula Abdul (Live to Dance) reprised her role as Jane’s voice of reason to give her some sage advice about her relationship with Grayson (Hurst). LeAnn Rimes (Nora Roberts’ Northern Lights) also guest starred as the estranged soon-to-be ex-wife to a hard-partying celebrity who is on trial for a hit-and-run case that Jane takes on. Additionally, the episode guest starred talk-show host Wendy Williams (The Wendy Williams Show, Dancing with the Stars), Mario Lopez and featured a musical dream sequence with the cast of Drop Dead Diva, choreographed by So You Think You Can Dance’s Keith “Tyce” Diorio.