Kid Nation -- or, as it's known in the CBS catacombs, Child Abuse For Fun And Profit -- took a tumble in the ratings Wednesday night, losing about 20 percent of an audience that wasn't very big to begin with. The show's second episode had just 7.6 million viewers, down from 9.38 million from last week's debut. And CBS executives with a memory for ratings -- that is, all of them -- will not fail to note that the nuclear-apocalypse drama Jericho, pulled in 11.7 million viewers in the same timeslot a year ago. It's not like there's a lot of water-cooler buzzer about which kid won a gold star Wednesday that's going to bring a tidal wave of new viewers. I'd say this time next week CBS will be contemplating whether it wants Beverly Hillbillies or Green Acres reruns in Kid Nation's timeslot.
UPDATE: I've heard of spin doctoring, but this is simply amazing, or maybe pathetic. I just got a press release from CBS bragging that Wednesday's Kid Nation was the second most watched show of the night among children aged 2 to 11. By next week, CBS will be boasting it was first among parakeets and second among household pets overall.