NBC sends 'The Biggest Loser' after 'Lost'

biggest-loser-vs-lost-320.jpg "Lost" will have a bit heavier competition for the second half of its season premiere. Emphasis on "heavier."

NBC has decided to shift "The Biggest Loser" back an hour on Tuesday night (Feb. 2), so both hours of the show will now go head-to-head with the "Lost" premiere from 9 to 11 p.m. The move bumps "The Jay Leno Show" off the air for that night; NBC will air a condensed version of this week's "Loser" at 8.

The switch will almost certainly upgrade NBC's ratings for the night -- "The Biggest Loser" is the network's top-rated show, and its second hour will probably just about double the typical "Leno" Tuesday audience at 10 p.m. But I have to wonder whether it will also (as I'm sure NBC intends) drag down the ratings for "Lost."

Last year "Lost" premiered to 11.35 million viewers. Given the anticipation surrounding the show's final season, it's reasonable to expect a somewhat bigger audience for this season's debut -- let's say 12 million, just for argument's sake.

The current cycle of "The Biggest Loser" is averaging 10.2 million viewers per week. Its season premiere -- the only episode in 2010 that hasn't had "American Idol" competition -- drew 11.7 million people. Those figures don't make an especially strong case for the idea that the show will depress "Lost's" ratings.

Finally, it's hard to imagine that there's much of a crossover audience between the two shows. And even if there is, I'm not sure how much it matters. With DVRs in better than a third of TV-watching homes, it's possible to watch both shows. So even if "Lost" or "Loser" scores a decisive win in the overnight ratings for Tuesday, the other show will make up some of that ground down the line when DVR use is factored in.

(One thing it probably will do is create a close race for the total-viewer lead at 10 p.m. on Tuesday. "Lost," "The Biggest Loser" and CBS' "The Good Wife" all figure to finish fairly close together in viewers, while "Lost" and "Loser" will vie for the 18-49 lead.)

What do you think of NBC's move? And are you, or anyone else you know, a die-hard fan of both "Lost" and "The Biggest Loser"?

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Photo credits: NBC, ABC