‘Wayward Pines’ Battles NBC’s ‘Red Nose Day’ for Ratings

Wayward Pines

Thursday night will see a battle for ratings between NBC’s telethon for children in poverty, Red Nose Day, and the somewhat creepy Fox’s Wayward Pines. Both programs have a lot to offer viewers.

Red Nose Day will make its US premier Thursday night on NBC at eight p.m. The telethon has an all-star cast featuring Will Ferrell, Martin Short, Neil Patrick Harris, Emily Blunt, Jack Black, Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Banks, Benedict Cumberbatch, Helen Mirren, Ian McKellen, Nick Offerman, Hugh Bonneville, Anna Kendrick, One Direction, John Legend, John Mellencamp, Keith Urban, Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, and The Voice coaches Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, Pharrell Williams, and Christina Aguilera.

Richard Curtis of Four Weddings and Funeral fame, created the telethon 30 years ago in the UK, it has since raised over $1 billion to combat childhood poverty. According to Curtis, Red Nose Day is not your typical telethon show. About half of the show will be pre-recorded skits and other comedic performances. One sketch mentioned by Curtis is an interesting parody of a mockumentary of Coldplay creating a musical of Game of Thrones. Coldplay’s Chris Martin wrote some original songs that the band and cast members from the show performed. The rest of the show will be performed live at the Hammerstien theater.

NBC’S Red Nose Day will be battling Wayward Pines on Fox tonight for ratings. The show created by Chad Hodge is based on a trilogy of books, The Wayward Pine Series by Blake Crouch, with M. Night Shyamalan directing. The show is being compared to Twin Peaks, which is not surprising as Crouch was a huge fan of the Twin Peaks when he was a kid. It has an all star cast with Matt Damon playing Special Agent Ethan Burk, who stumbles into the small town of Wayward Pines, Idaho, after a car accident. Bloodied, bruised and confused, he ends up in the hospital, where he begins to notice how strange the town and its inhabitants are. He soon finds an ally in Julliet Lewis’ character Beverly, who he thinks of as the only normal person in the town. Other cast member include Oscar winner Melissa Leo who plays creepy nurse Pam, and Terrence Howard(Empire) who plays Sheriff Pope.

The show is a thriller with a supernatural twist. Wayward Pines premier did not do particular well in ratings only scoring 1.0 rating/3 share among 18-49 year old viewers, but that viewership grew to a 1.9 rating/6 share once the Live +3 DVR  number were released. That is a 90 percent increase, a record for playback increase for any series premier among the five big networks this season.

According to Hodge the show is a limited series, that will run for ten weeks. Fans of the show will be satisfied as it has a beginning, middle, and end and is a complete story. Hodge promises the show will not end with a cliffhanger, that though he likes to be surprised, he does not like to be manipulated, so he has no intention of doing that to his viewers. There are only plans for one season, but the possibility of a second season has not been ruled out.

With Red Nose Day battling Wayward Pines for ratings tonight, one can wonder if like last week most people will wait to watch Wayward Pines on their DVR’s or other platforms. Curtis is hoping that viewers turn into Red Nose Day, enjoy the performance, laugh and donate money for a good cause. Fox on the other hand is hoping that viewers will be so hooked after last weeks episode that instead of waiting to watch it on their DVR’s  they will  turn into tonight. Perhaps viewers will jump between both programs. Red Nose Day airs tonight on NBC at eight p.m. Wayward Pines is on Fox at nine p.m tonight,

By Jessica Hamel

NPR: TV Thriller ‘Wayward Pines’ Offers Suspense-and an Ending

Blastr: Shyamalan’s Wayward Pines Sees Biggest Gains of Any Show This Season With DVR Numbers

Syracuse.com: Red Nose Day TV Special Tonight Promises Star-Studded Comedy for a Cause

Photo Courtesy of Elliot Brown’s Flickr page- Creative Commons License

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