Fox's 'The Masked Dancer' Debuts as Top-Rated New Show of the Season

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Michael Becker/Fox

Fox’s ‘The Masked Dancer’ Debuts as Top-Rated New Show of the Season

The Craig Robinson-hosted “Masked Singer” spinoff delivers a solid premiere amid a sleepy holiday weekend

“The Masked Dancer” premiere on Sunday night delivered solid viewership numbers for Fox, marking the 2020-21 TV season’s top new series to date.

Buoyed by a football lead-in, the Craig Robinson-hosted “Masked Singer” spinoff delivered a 1.3 rating among adults under 50 and a total of 4.8 million viewers, according to Nielsen’s live-plus-same-day measurement. The episode was easily the top entertainment broadcast of the night with the other networks predominantly airing reruns.

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Those numbers put “The Masked Dancer” ahead of the premiere of “I Can See Your Voice” (hosted by Fox mainstay and “Masked Dancer” judge Ken Jeong) back in September. The two unscripted series currently stand as the top two new shows of the coronavirus-delayed TV season thus far, building on the success Fox has seen with “The Masked Singer.”

The network’s flagship singing competition, which concluded its fourth season earlier this month, has seen slight declines season-to-season but continues to be a reliable performer for the network.

“The Masked Dancer” — originally developed from a parody sketch on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” — uses a similar format to “The Masked Singer” but, naturally, with dancing instead of singing. Robinson serves as host, with Jeong leading the judging panel alongside Paula Abdul, Brian Austin Green (a former “Masked Singer” contestant) and Ashley Tisdale.

The first contestant, identified as “Disco Ball,” was unmasked on Monday’s episode. Read TheWrap’s interview with the celebrity dancer here.

 

Reid Nakamura