Tuesday, Sept. 23: Second Night Wins To CBS, ABC and Fox

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September 24th, 2008

Scoreboard CBS ABC FOX NBC Uni CW
Total Viewers (million) 14.884 14.341 10.897 7.964 3.946 2.413
Rating/Share: Adults 18-49 3.3/9 3.8/10 4.6/12 3.2/8 1.6/4 1.2/3
Rating/Share: Adults 18-34 1.8/5 2.6/8 4.4/13 2.7/8 1.9/5 1.6/5

The second night of the new television year spread around the good news again. CBS had the largest average audience with 14.884 million viewers (just ahead of ABC with 14.341 million). ABC had the most viewed show of the night in Dancing with the Stars which averaged 18.195 million viewers (NCIS was second with 17.718 million viewers). Fox ruled the age demos averaging a 4.6 rating for adults 18-49 (ABC was second with a 3.9) and a 4.4 rating for adults 18-34 (NBC was second with a 2.7).

While NCIS was the most viewed show from 8-9, House, with about 70% of its viewers crushed it in the age demos for the hour. House had the highest overall age demo ratings for the night with a 5.0 for 18-49 and a 4.7 for 18-34. In the battle of unscripted shows, NBC's Biggest Loser: Families fell about 10% from last week, but managed to beat the premiere of ABC's Opportunity Knocks particularly in the demos. Quite disappointing for ABC. CW's 90210 audience fell 11% from last week, and it was down 17% for the 18-49s and almost 21% for the 18-34s. Look for a CW press release spinning the gender data later.

Dancing with the Stars had the biggest audience and the biggest 18-49 demo from 9-10, but the premiere of The Mentalist did CBS proud, holding all of the 18-49 demo from NCIS and even building on its 18-34 demo. With real competition, Fringe shed 28% of its audience from last week. It also lost 19% of its 18-49 demo and 11% of its 18-34 demo. Still, it won the 18-34 demo for the hour by a wide margin, and was competitive in the 18-49 demo. Less consolation for the CW as Privileged lost 23% of its audience, 18% of its 18-49s and 7% of its 18-34s. It finished a distant sixth in all categories for the hour.

Dancing the the Stars also swept the 10-11 hour, but the premiere of Law & Order:SVU was just a tick behind in the 18-34 demo. We don't have historical 18-34 data, so I can't compare that with last year. The premiere of Without a Trace was second in audience for the hour but a distant third in the demos.

Full details:


Time Net Show Viewers Live+SD (Millons) 18-49 Rating/ Share 18-34 Rating/ Share
8:00 CBS NCIS (premiere) 17.718 3.5/10 1.8/5
  FOX House 12.134 5.0/14 4.7/15
  NBC Biggest Loser: Families 6.644 2.6/7 2.2/7
  ABC Opportunity Knocks (premiere) 6.634 1.9/5 1.5/5
  UNI Cuidado con el Angel 3.954 1.6/4 1.9/6
  CW 90210 2.963 1.5/4 1.9/6
9:00 ABC Dancing with the Stars 17.870 4.5/11 3.1/8
  CBS The Mentalist (premiere) 15.549 3.5/9 1.9/5
  FOX Fringe 9.651 4.2/10 4.0/11
  NBC Biggest Loser: Families 7.725 3.4/8 2.8/8
  UNI Fuego en la Sangre 4.452 1.8/4 2.1/6
  CW Privileged 1.862 0.9/2 1.3/4
10:00 ABC Dancing with the Stars 18.520 5.0/13 3.3/9
  CBS Without a Trace (premiere) 11.385 2.8/7 1.6/5
  NBC Law & Order: SVU (premiere) 9.524 3.8/10 3.2/9
  UNI Aqui y Ahora 3.433 1.4/4 1.5/5

Shows are sorted by viewers in each time slot. Demo winners for each timeslot are in bold.

Here are some interesting half hour results. Obviously, gaining viewers is better than losing viewers. Those looking strong here: House, Opportunity Knocks, and Law & Order:SVU.

Privileged, Fringe and Without A Trace look weak. While The Mentalist was essentially steady, that's a big positive for a premiere.


Time Net Show Viewers Live+SD (Millons) 18-49 Rating/ Share 18-34 Rating/ Share
8:00 FOX House 11.504 4.7/14 4.4/15
8:30 FOX House 12.781 5.2/14 4.9/15
9:00 FOX Fringe 10.130 4.3/11 4.1/12
9:30 FOX Fringe 9.172 4.0/10 3.7/10
8:00 ABC Opportunity Knocks (premiere) 5.976 1.6/5 1.3/4
8:30 ABC Opportunity Knocks (premiere) 7.291 2.1/6 1.7/5
9:00 CW Privileged 1.979 0.9/2 1.3/4
9:30 CW Privileged 1.745 0.8/2 1.2/3
9:00 CBS The Mentalist (premiere) 15.713 3.4/9 1.9/6
9:30 CBS The Mentalist (premiere) 15.384 3.6/9 1.9/6
10:00 CBS Without a Trace (premiere) 11.845 2.9/7 1.6/5
10:30 CBS Without a Trace (premiere) 10.925 2.7/7 1.5/5
10:00 NBC Law & Order: SVU (premiere) 8.978 3.5/9 2.9/8
10:30 NBC Law & Order: SVU (premiere) 10.069 4.0/11 3.4/10

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2008 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved. 


Fast Affiliate Overnight Ratings: Local metered-market ratings service of Nielsen Station Index (NSI) in which household ratings and shares are provided to clients the morning following the day or evening of telecast. While routinely used for "next day" immediate analysis, these fast affiliate ratings are by process inaccurate for programs that air live across a network since they represent affiliate time period performance. For example, last night's 10-11pm affiliate #'s would reflect 10pm on the East Coast but also 10pm on the West Coast which for a live event would not represent the same broadcast or portion of the broadcast.

Rating: Estimated percentage of the universe of TV households (or other specified group) tuned to a program in the average minute. Ratings are expressed as a percent.

Share (of Audience): The percent of households (or persons) using television who are tuned to a specific program, station or network in a specific area at a specific time. (See also, Rating, which represents tuning or viewing as a percent of the entire population being measured.)

LIVE+SD: The number that watched a program either while it was broadcast OR watched via DVR on the same day [through 3AM the next day] the program was broadcast.

For more information see Numbers 101.

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