All is Better Than Well in ShondaLand

Viola Davis and Shonda RhimesGood news. It?s Week 3 for Shonda Rhimes? ?How to Get Away with Murder,? a new legal drama starring Academy award-nominated actress Viola Davis, and the ratings just keep getting better.

According to, ?Murder,? during its debut week on ABC, brought in ?14 million viewers and averaged a 3.8 rating among adults under 50, actually building on its Scandal (11.9 million, 3.8 rating) lead-in among viewers and improving slightly on last fall?s Scandal season premiere. Even better for ABC, moving Scandal back an hour did nothing to harm its numbers: Last night?s episode was its most-watched and highest-rated episode yet. And at least for now, the riskiest part of ABC?s Shonda strategy also clicked, with Grey?s Anatomy effortlessly relocating to 8 p.m. with 9.8 million viewers and a 3.0 rating. That?s down about 12 percent from last year, but such a modest decline is normal for a series that has been on the air so long?Overall, ABC scored its best numbers on Thursday since 2009 ? an amazing feat in an era in which live network viewership has plummeted.??

Yes, you read right. Rhimes has THREE hit shows on ABC airing in the prime time slots of 8:00 p.m., 9:00 p.m., and 10:00 p.m. – all produced through her production company, ShondaLand. ?Murder? is the latest in Rhimes? arsenal of television hits; preceded by ?Grey?s Anatomy,? ?Private Practice,? and ?Scandal.???

In addition to Nielsen?s estimate of 14 million viewers, ?Murder? also broke the DVR record of number of viewers to DVR a television show on its premiere night when it logged 6 million viewers who, reportedly, watched the show on playback within three days following its debut.????

In an interview with PEOPLE magazine, Rhimes said of her success, “I don’t think there is any sort of formula to it. I just try to make something I would want to watch.”

With ?Murder? airing on Thursday nights, ABC has branded the all-Rhimes line-up, ?Thank God It?s Thursday.??

Read more at Variety.