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'Lights Out' takes a beating in low-rated FX premiere


"Lights Out," FX's new boxing drama, might need to spend a little more time on the speed bag.

Despite strong reviews, Tuesday's premiere averaged just 1.5 million total viewers, according to the Nielsen Co.

That's a very low figure within the FX universe. Last year, "Justified" opened to 4.2 million viewers; in 2008, "Sons of Anarchy" premiered to 2.2 million.

But FX has had some bad luck lately with launches. The offbeat crime drama "Terriers," another critical favorite, was yanked last month after struggling with low ratings.

Did you tune in? Why or why not?

-- Scott Collins

Photo: Holt McCallany (left) in FX's "Lights Out." Credit: Frank Ockenfels III / FX

Comments () | Archives (15)

I consider myself pretty well versed in the TV world for a normal viewer & the only way I even heard about this show was via a couple of tweets from critics saying a line or two about it. If that's all I had heard, I can't believe that many regular TV watchers even knew it was debuting.

And no, I did not watch even though I casually watch boxing. I don't know what would have gotten me to, but I basically didn't know much about it - not enough to flag my interest.

I waited months to watch the premier last night...VERY DISAPPOINTED.

I hated the lead character ..actually despised him!...I will not be tuning in next week. But reading "Johnny Bad Ass" for the third time...the characters are very colorful, action swift and it has more twists and turns than Chubby Checker

it is not believable ..no passion from the main character and the so called wife is too stuffy english! not irish american at all

snore,,,is it over yet? Wow, I dont know where to begin, but Im too tired-pilot almost put me to sleep thrice,,Fought harder that "lights" did to stay up-what the hell kind of nickname is that,lol?

I was disappointed in this pilot because of all the buzz.

Holt McCallany is a great actor and this seems to be a good role for him, but there are so many problems with the pilot. McCallany himself has never been married or had children and it shows. He doesn't know how to relate to either of them believeably. No one wants to watch a one dimensional man who only lives to fight. It doesn't work for me. I think this actor might need to get more of a real life off screen to understand what he is playing. Because he's coming off a little flat in the emotion department.

I don't know if I will tune in again to be honest it didn't catch me.

Not impressed with the fighting/boxing choreography.It's so fake unlike "Rocky".
I don't know at this point how i feel for the main character. Love him or hate him?

I for one won't be tuning in again. There was something so overly staged about this show it completely took me out of it. The pilot was predictable and very slow. McCallany like the above commenter said seems to suffer from not having much life experience to relate to. Wife and family scenes were so unmoving you could tell he was phoning it in. I am a father of two and it gives me much more heart and life. I think the actor really needs to get more life experience, have a family and a wife, to offer more range than just the muscle. The best actors out their have full lives and children and a wife so they can understand what the most powerful force in life is -love. Not just getting back in the ring.

This show better pray for a word of mouth following. There are some real problems when show's get rated this low from the gate. There are problems with it being slow and cliche writing but maybe next week will be better.

One things for sure you cannot blame the advertising campaign. It was everywhere-If it continues this way it will be a repeat of Terriers.

I thought show was amazing! I will be tuning in every week until they cancel it! I thought "Lights" was a great character and the way he is with his daughters is probably the same way I would be lol! Thank god I got 2 boys! But I dont know what all the negativity is about Im a huge Rocky fan and this reminds me of Rocky! Plus it was just a pilot Im sure it will get better!

snoooooooooooooore. Is it over yet? This was a snoozefest.

I don't know why I would tune in weekly. It didn't catch my eye or attention.

I almost turned it off, the opening was so formulaic and contrived. I'm glad I didn't, because it really took off. McCallany is quietly terrific, and it's incredibly well directed and edited, which makes for captivating storytelling.
My one complaint is the boxing scenes. There is some basic athleticism missing, which is really annoying. But I'm past that, it's TV.

I just set my DVR for the run...

I almost turned it off, the opening was so formulaic and contrived. I'm glad I didn't, because it really took off. McCallany is quietly terrific, and it's incredibly well directed and edited, which makes for captivating storytelling.
They could use an athletic trainer to get the actors to use their bodies in a more realistic way. Other than that, I'm in.
I just set my DVR for the run...

Despite what the critics have said in praise of "Lights Out", I must say I was let down by what I've seen so far from this show and the writing/producing of Warren Leight and Ross Fineman. As a regular view of F/X shows that I love, I thought this show would have something a little different. The problem is it's an okay story with cookie cutter casting (although McCallany is far from a household name) and cliche storylines. In today's competitive TV market where even A List celebs are starring in their own shows, it makes a show like this very hard to survive. The story may have the twist of it being about boxing, but the story of the broke has been athlete having a mid life crisis is very familiar. It's also called "The Wrestler" or "The Fighter". I believe that even though the producers and execs at fox thought this story would be helped by the attention on boxing in these films, I actually think it hinders this show. They cannot compete with the quality of the acting of those other films, or the budget or the story. So instead "Lights Out" is an amalgam of cliches and it feels very familiar. I feel sorry for the actors, particularly Holt McCallany who this is his first real leading role. But I would say the way things are going that this show will run more like a mini series and last one season. I don't believe it is captivating enough to draw large audiences like Breaking Bad or Mad Men. It doesn't have the edge of those projects and to compare it to them seems ludicrous. I think it will be lights out for "Lights Out" at the end of the season. It didn't capture me and I did watch the first two episodes.

I didn't tune in because I don't watch FX anymore. Their decision to cancel the best story being told on television (Terriers) after only 13 episodes left me with a bad taste in my mouth. I can do without FX.

I thought it was off to a slow start too until I realized the writers were setting up and gleefully taking apart the image of a perfect family man. (Maybe were so indoctrinated by other networks episodic story telling instead of building characters and story during a series?) He loves violence, like a lot of people do, but as a celebrated former heavyweight he can get away with it - the fantasy of it - in a way normal people just can't. Those of us who like the show relish when he pounds on loud mouths bullies or arrogant rich guys who are asking for it, something that would put us behind bars or at least in the poor house. I like that the wife is clueless, but I wish she were more interesting. (While it seems unrealistic that a prize fighter marries a woman smart enough to be a doctor, Holyfield and Tyson did it.) Daughters are milk toasts, maybe they'll get better.


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