'Wicked Tuna' and' 'Brain Games' score big viewership for Nat Geo

What's a winning combo for your grey matter?

Tuna and Brain Games, especially for National Geographic Channel as the combo of TV series "Wicked Tuna" and "Brain Games" added up to big ratings for the network.

From NGC:

Brain Games Sets Monday Record with Double Premieres Averaging 0.9 P 25–54 and

1.5 Million Total Viewers

Record Monday Night Follows Highest Rated Wicked Tuna Episode Sunday

Scoring a 0.8 P 25–54, More Than 1.2 Million Viewers

Official release:

National Geographic Channel’s ratings momentum springs ahead as the new series Brain Games debuts as the highest rated series premiere in network history Monday, following the highest rated episode of Wicked Tuna Sunday night.  This comes after last week’s ratings success of the three-night, six-hour event, The ’80s: The Decade That Made Us.  (For more information, visit www.ngcpr.com and follow us on Twitter @ngc_pr.)

The Monday night premiere of Brain Games launched with two episodes at 9 and 9:30 p.m. ET/PT averaging a 0.9 P 25–54, delivering 1.5 million viewers and setting a record as the highest rated series launch in channel history. The first episode delivered a 0.9 P 25–54, 1.2 HH and nearly 1.6 million total viewers with the second one following close behind with 0.9 P 25–54, 1.1 HH and nearly 1.5 million total viewers.  Brain Games was renewed for a second season even before Monday night’s premiere, with production expected to begin this summer.

Wicked Tuna on Sunday night scored a series-high 0.8 P 25–54, 1.0 HH and more than 1.2 million viewers.  This marks the top-rated episode in the two-season history of the popular franchise-making series, which was already renewed for a third season expected to begin filming later this spring.

This follows last week’s impressive ratings for The ’80s: The Decade That Made Us, which scored a 0.8 HH rating and a 0.6 P 25–54 from Sunday, April 14, at 8 and 9 p.m. to Tuesday, April 16, at 9 and 10 p.m. ET/PT.

“I have stated before that National Geographic Channel intends to run toward smart and we are thrilled the viewers decided to join us,” said David Lyle, CEO of the National Geographic Channels.  “This success continues our momentum driven by a strategy of giving our viewers original, authentic and most importantly entertaining programming that embodies the spirit of this brand.”

“This incredible 1-2-3 ratings punch is a testament to the work of our dynamic team here at the channel,” said Howard T. Owens, president of National Geographic Channel. “And the great news is, we still have more to come with the May launches of Ultimate Survival Alaska and Life Below Zero.”

The premiere of Brain Games was accompanied by a robust marketing campaign and the launch of an interactive website at www.natgeotv.com/braingames.

Brain Games was hailed by critics as “tremendous fun” and “makes science entertaining,” and fans on Twitter joined the chorus, calling the show “mind blowing” and “coolest show on tv.”  The new series explores a world where time slows down, reality is an illusion and things aren’t always as they seem—the human brain.  Host and wonder junkie Jason Silva (@JasonSilva)  and deception specialist Apollo Robbins (@ApolloRobbins) size up the human brain with an intricate series of interactive experiments to see how easily the brain can be fooled, uncovering the surprising nature of how we process information, feel emotions and perceive the world around us.  Get ready for lots of mind-blowing illusions, games and challenges that will make you question whether “seeing is actually believing.”

As the second season of Wicked Tuna draws to a close in a thrilling two-part season finale, only one captain will walk away the winner. Cocky young captain Tyler McLaughlin aboard Pin Wheel (@PinWheelFV) runs neck and neck with last year’s bluefin champion, Dave Carraro (@TunaDotCom) of FV-Tuna.com, threatening to unceremoniously swipe his title, while new captain Paul Hebert (@PissahTunaPaul) edges closer to his astounding goal of catching $50,000 worth of bluefin as a standalone captain aboard the Lisa and Jake.  For more information, www.natgeotv.com/wickedtuna.

Brain Games continues Mondays at 9 p.m. ET/PT.  Wicked Tuna’s two-part season finale begins Sunday, May 5, at 9 p.m. ET/PT and concludes Sunday, May 12, at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

Brain Games is produced for National Geographic Channel by National Geographic Television (NGT). For NGT, Jerry Kolber is executive producer. For NGC, Lynn Sadofsky is vice president of production and development, Allan Butler is executive producer, executive vice president of programming is Michael Cascio and president is Howard T. Owens.

Wicked Tuna is produced for National Geographic Channel by Pilgrim Studios. For Pilgrim Studios, executive producers are Craig Piligian and Mike Nichols. For National Geographic Channel, executive producer is Robert Palumbo, vice president of production and development is Lynn Sadofsky, executive vice president of programming is Michael Cascio and president is Howard T. Owens.

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