By Lynette Rice
April 07, 2010 at 06:27 PM EDT

Image Credit: Jack Rowand/ABCFans of science fiction who don’t want to see the genre fizzle out on network TV should start tuning into ratings-starved shows like V and FlashForward. ABC’s alien drama starring Elizabeth Mitchell hit a series low 2.5 rating/7 share among adults 18-49 last night after opening with a first-place 2.8/8 last week. The drama only retained 66 percent of its lead-in from Lost, which finished its time slot with a 3.8/10. The news was just as bad for FlashForward’s third outing last week: ABC’s Thursday drama dropped to a series low 1.5 rating among adults 18-49 and a mere 5.0 million viewers, down from the prior week’s 1.8 and 6.2 million.

Lost isn’t necessarily breaking records, either – at least, not good ones. The drama was at a season low last night and down significantly from its Feb. 2 debut (a 5.5 rating in 18-49). Still, the heavily-serialized drama continues to attract a valuable and rabid fanbase, which is catnip for advertisers. And the audience is sure to return in anticipation of the show’s finale on May 23.

Meanwhile, the reception for the April 1 return of Fringe wasn’t particularly dramatic; it earned a 2.2/7 in 18-49 and attracted 5.8 million viewers, down 33 percent and 25 percent, respectively, from last year when it ran on far less competitive Tuesdays. It is still boosting Fox’s performance in the Thursday time slot by 10 percent in viewers, however, which is why the show earned a third season pickup.

For more on the science fiction genre:

Lost’: Networks search for a successor