TV Ratings Thursday: 'Big Bang Theory' Edges 'Idol' but still sees Season Low, 'Touch', 'Person of Interest', 'Mentalist' 'Office', 'Missing', 'Awake', 'Parks & Rec' Also See New Lows

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April 27th, 2012

Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 2.9/8 2.6/7 2.2/6 1.5/4 1.4/4 0.8/2
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 1.8/6 1.0/4 1.7/5 1.5/5 1.4/5 0.9/3
Total Viewers (million) 10.464 11.595 7.716 3.730 3.097 1.711


FOX won the night with the 18-49 crowd but lost out to CBS for total viewers.

American Idol earned a 3.9 adults 18-49 rating, which was down from last week's 4.0.  Touch fell to a  new season/series low with a 1.9, down two-tenths from last week's  2.1 adults 18-49 rating.

CBS' The Big Bang Theory returned from two weeks of repeats this week and was the #1 show of the night, but only earning a 4.0, down four-tenths from the 4.4 its last original earned and a new season low.  Rules of Engagement drew a 2.5, three-tenths up from last week's series low 2.2 adults 18-49 rating. Person of Interest and The Mentalist also returned from repeats this week, and earned a 2.4 and a 2.1, both down from the 3.0 and 2.4 their last originals earned and new series lows.

ABC's Missing was down again to a new series low 1.3 adults 18-49 rating vs. last week's season/series low-matching 1.4. Grey's Anatomy was down a tenth to a 3.2 compared to last week's 3.3 adults 18-49 rating, but Scandal was up a tenth to a 2.1 18-49 rating, after last week's a 2.0 rating.

On NBC, Community was up a tenth to a 1.4 from with last week's series low matching a 1.3 adults 18-49 rating. 30 Rock aired a live special and was up a tenth to a 1.6  adults 18-49 rating, vs. last week's 1.5. The Office was down again to a new series low 2.1 after last week's 2.2 adults 18-49 rating.  Parks and Recreation was down a tenth from last week's 1.7 adults 18-49 rating and is another series low.  Awake drew a 0.8 adults 18-49 rating, vs. last week's 0.9 18-49 rating and is a series low.

The Vampire Diaries was even with last week's series low 1.0 adults 18-49, and The Secret Circle was also flat compared to last week's season/series low 0.5 adults 18-49 rating.

Late-night ratings are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Thursday, April 26, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM CBS The Big Bang Theory 4.0 13 12.520
FOX American Idol 3.9 12 14.449
NBC Community 1.4 4 3.288
ABC Missing 1.3 4 6.898
CW The Vampire Diaries 1.0 3 2.232
8:30PM CBS Rules of Engagement 2.5 7 8.349
NBC 30 Rock 1.6 5 3.548
9:00PM ABC Grey's Anatomy 3.2 8 9.270
CBS Person Of Interest 2.4 6 12.497
NBC The Office 2.1 6 4.148
FOX Touch 1.9 5 6.479
CW The Secret Circle 0.5 1 1.190
9:30PM NBC Parks and Recreation 1.6 4 3.211
10:00PM ABC Scandal 2.1 6 6.981
CBS The Mentalist 2.1 6 11.853
NBC Awake 0.8 2 2.194

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2012 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

Via NBC press notes:

In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.3/6; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 2.9/7; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.3/8; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.7/5. 

  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 0.6/3; "Late Show," 0.8/4; "Nightline," 1.0/4; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.6/3.
  • At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.3/4 in metered-market households) trailed CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.4/5).  In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.4/3 in 18-49) trailed "Late Late Show" (0.5/3).
  • At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 0.8/3 in metered-market households and a 0.3/3 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters.

You can see TV ratings from other recent Overnight ratings reports here.


Fast Affiliate Ratings: These first national ratings, including demographics, are available at approximately 11 AM (ET) the day after telecast, and are released to subscribing customers daily. These data, from the National People Meter sample, are strictly time-period information, based on the normal broadcast network feed, and include all programming on the affiliated stations, sometimes including network programming, sometimes not. The figures may include stations that did not air the entire network feed, as well as local news breaks or cutaways for local coverage or other programming. Fast Affiliate ratings are not as useful for live programs and are likely to differ significantly from the final results, because the data reflect normal broadcast feed patterns. For example, with a World Series game, Fast Affiliate Ratings would include whatever aired from 8-11PM on affiliates in the Pacific Time Zone, following the live baseball game, but not game coverage that begins at 5PM PT. The same would be true of Presidential debates as well as live award shows and breaking news reports.

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.)

Time Shifted Viewing – Program ratings for national sources are produced in three streams of data – Live, Live+Same Day (Live+SD) and Live+7 Day. Time shifted figures account for incremental viewing that takes place with DVRs. Live+Same Day (Live+SD) include viewing during the same broadcast day as the original telecast, with a cut-off of 3:00AM local time when meters transmit daily viewing to Nielsen for processing. Live+7 Day ratings include incremental viewing that takes place during the 7 days following a telecast.

For more information see Numbers 101.

  • John A

    Hope Fringe goes to a 1.2 tonight. Come on people show fox some love.

  • Bunny


    Parks would have been cancelled if it was on a different network..
    viewers can’t relate and it’s a single-cam sitcom

  • Justin121

    I should’ve been more clear. What I meant was:

    Is NBC still trying to make [insert a niche comedy] The Office’s successor? Seriously?

    It’s 2012 and they have Community, Parks and Recreation, The Office, and 30 Rock — a line-up that was a bust back in 2009.

    30 Rock, Parks and Recreation, Up All Night, Outsourced — none of those are ever going to be the new “Thursday flagship”. NBC should really stop this failed model they’ve adopted since ~2006. They got lucky with The Office. That’s it. They’ve never launched any hit out of it. It just saddens me to see, in May 2012 and going on Fall 2012, they still keep this “strategy”, if you can call it that. Anyone in Managent wouldn’t.

    My personal liking of the shows is irrelevant. I’m talking ratings.

    The Super Bowl comment was a joke. After six or eight straight seasons of delibiretly running your network into the ground by doing the same stupidity over and over and over you shouldn’t be considered a major network and allowed to air th SB.


    I loved the first two seasons of P&R. Both the addition of Rob Lowe and Adam Scott and the show being self-aware and too cutesy have been a major let down but I still watch.

  • moli

    @Bunny Right.. a show about a group of people in a small midwest city who, despite their different backgrounds, find a way to work together to make their town better, and in the process, form meaningful friendships. That’s such a difficult premise to follow. It’s amazing this show has found any viewers at all who can relate…

  • Charles

    With POI having 1 new episode the past 5 weeks, it’s no surprise that the ratings went down quite a bit. It was gaining momentum at the beginning of January when new shows came on. CBS should’ve ordered another episode or two of it so it wouldn’t have had such a lull between new episodes.

  • Nick

    Predictions for the finals:

    Adjusted UP:
    •Missing 1.3 to 1.4
    Missing has (finally) stopped falling LAST WEEK, so why should it start to fall again?
    • AI 3.9 to 4.1
    Every week it gets adjusted up.
    • TBBT 4.0 to 4.1
    ON A ROLL! Why stop?
    • 30 Rock 1.6 to 1.7
    The live show should help more. (at least it definitely won’t be adjusted down)
    • POI 2.4 to 2.5
    It has not dropped 0.6 points

    Adjusted DOWN:
    • Scandal 2.1 to 2.0
    Overrun + series high = What the…

    :-( @Touch but sadly it is gonna keep falling. :-(

  • ron

    TSC stay steady e.e please renew it!

  • LJ

    too bad about awake. I really like that show.

  • W

    CBS did well once again! Great new episodes of comedies and dramas!

  • creature 1555

    Just CANCEL 30 Rock already it can’t even beat Chelsea in viewers for a special live episode.

    Cancel that whole block as well except for P&R and put some real shows there that people actually want to watch.

  • Julie

    I know it’s too late now (renewal-wise), but I think it’s such a pity people didn’t stick with Awake. The first few eps did leave me a bit ‘meh’, but I kept with it, came to care about the characters, and now it’s a favourite. Jason Isaacs is very good. Sad to know there’s only a few eps left.
    I also watch POI and Touch, however I almost have to force myself to watch Touch, only because I think Kiefer Sutherland is worth it. But the show itself often bores me, some of the character connections seem too contrived, and as much as I adore Kiefer’s voice I’ve actually had to mute it when he spends half an episode running around yelling “Jake!” over and over. I enjoyed last night though (possibly because Jake didn’t run away!)

  • eridapo

    So with ESPN and the NFL Network combined, the Draft had a 4.0 demo and 8M viewers. Add Basketball and Hockey to the mix, and Male skewing shows would take a hit naturally.

  • Carmen

    @ P&B

    “but as long as advertizers care only about the age of the viewers then Networks will only care about the age of the viewers and not how many of them watch, because the Networks clients are NOT the viewers but the advertisers”

    As many do, you misspeak when you say that advertisers don’t care about total viewers.
    That is a totally erroneous statement. There is not an advertiser anywhere who is not interested in more viewers.

    It is the networks. . .not the advertisers. . .who don’t care about total viewers.

    That is due to the fact that the system of payment the networks receive (from advertisers) is derived from a scale based upon the number of 18-49 viewers that the network (show) attracts.
    Beyond that point, the NETWORK does not benefit from additional viewers over (or in theory) under 18-49.

    The advertisers are willing to pay a premium to get 18-49 viewers. The key word, though, is WILLING to pay.
    But to say that advertisers don’t care about total viewers is not correct.

    There can quite often be an equilibrium point where a lower demo rated show with millions of additional total viewers and the accompanying sales revenue they can generate will overwhelm the sales revenue value of a higher rated demo show which has millions of fewer viewers.

    And isn’t that the whole idea of advertising on TV in the first place- To increase profits by means of increased sales revenues.

    But that is not of interest to the Network. They only get paid on 18-49.

    So, to sum up. When people say that total viewers don’t matter. They should be specific and clarify that they don’t matter to the networks.
    They are always of value to advertisers.

  • Wear Red

    NBC better keep Harry’s Law and use it to grow County.

    NBC Thursdays
    8:00p The Biggest Loser
    9:00p Harry’s Law
    10:00p County

  • Rebecca

    That makes more sense to me then. ;-) I’m fine with Adam Scott and Rob Lowe on the show, but YMMV of course. I still can’t find seasons one and two of Parks on dvd in stores – might check one more place and then just order them online if necessary.

    I get that about Touch. I’ve liked each episode thus far, some more than others. It does seem better when Jake stays put and Keifer isn’t as manic. Sometimes it’s a chore to get through the episodes, IMO, but like I’ve said before (different days) I’m never sorry I watched. Always pleased with the outcome.

  • Matto

    Grey’s held up well only losing about 500K viewers from 9.8M to 9.3M… Misiing is surprising VERY steady and STRONG in viewers…I noticed that when it premiered to a miniscule 2.0 but 10.6M…Scandal is extremely steady (2.0,2.0,2.0,2.1) but it will get adj. down as usual :( OUCH at TBBT with a 4.0, hope it doesnt adj. down… also HAHA at TheMentalist had double viewers than Scandal but same in the demo. HAHA :D

  • Matto

    OK I know Harrys Law airas on Sundays not Thursdays but every week it goes down to EITHER A 1.0 OR A 0.9 BUT every week it grows in viewers and RIGHT NOW IT IS THE #1 NBC DRAMA IN VIEWERS! every week it at least has inbetween 7.2 and 8.9MV!

  • H5O Fan

    @Carman, no….If any network brags about viewers it’s CBS, it’s advertisers that do not care. Woooow, I am pretty sure your post is totally opposite of what is going on.

  • John

    Do we need to start threatining people by gunpoint to start watching tv again?

  • creature 1555

    I agree with the people who say Harry’s Law needs to stay on. The lineup wouldn’t look as laughable on Thursdays if they moved it there.

    Move those single-cams to Friday nights nobody’s watching them anyways.

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