With NBC Sunday Night Football at #3, two other NFL related shows were also in the top 20, The OT (Fox's Sunday recap show) and NBC's Sunday Night Pre-Kick runup show.
Along with American Idol and football there were a total of 11 unscripted shows in the top 20. Cheap (except for NFL games) and successful is a powerful force in the TV world.
CBS and ABC lead the networks, each with 6 of the top 20 shows. Fox and NBC each claimed 4 of the top 20 shows. But American Idol's lead over the runner ups was so great that Fox easily won the seasonal 18-49 title.
Most surprising to me is the return of The Bachelor to such a level of success. Time will tell whether this season was just lightning in a bottle or whether the franchise has been revived.
Compare this season's top 20 to last season's (2007-8) top 20. Remember the WGA strike hammered most scripted shows.
Top 20 Shows For Adults 18-49 For The 2008-9 Broadcast Prime-Time Season
|Rank||Programs||Network||STD Adults 18-49 Live+SD (000)||P18-49 Rating|
|3||NBC SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL||NBC||8,533||6.5|
|6||TWO AND A HALF MEN||CBS||6,215||4.7|
|8||DANCING WITH THE STARS||ABC||6,135||4.6|
|12||SUNDAY NIGHT NFL PRE-KICK||NBC||5,578||4.2|
|16||RULES OF ENGAGEMENT||CBS||5,154||3.9|
|18||BIGGEST LOSER 7||NBC||5,020||3.8|
|19||DANCING W/STARS RESULTS||ABC||5,017||3.8|
Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2009 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.