TV Ratings Wednesday: 'American Idol' down, 'Survivor', 'Modern Family', 'CSI', 'The Middle' & 'Off Their Rockers' Hit Lows, 'Don't Trust the B' Rebounds

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May 3rd, 2012

Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 4.6/13 2.6/7 2.4/7 1.4/4 1.3/4 0.3/1
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 3.1/10 1.4/4 1.9/6 0.9/3 1.3/4 0.3/1
Total Viewers (million) 16.3 10.116 7.065 5.202 3.370 0.952

American Idol  earned a 4.6 adults 18-49 rating, down two tenths from last Wednesday's 4.8. However, Idol still easily lead a FOX win for adults 18-49 ratings and total viewership on the night and has now surpassed NBC’s The Voice as the #1 show of the season (6.2 vs. 6.1) – even including The Voice’s high rated post-Super Bowl premiere.

ABC's Wednesday night returned from repeats this week. The Middle earned a 2.0, down a tenth from its last original and a new season low. Suburgatory was flat with its last original's season low 2.0 18-49 rating. Modern Family earned to a 4.0 rating which is a season low and down a tenth from its last original's 4.1. Don't Trust The B---- in Apartment 23  was back up from last week's series low 2.0 adults 18-49 rating, gaining four-tenths to earn a 2.4 adults 18-49 rating, but it was down two tenths from the last time it aired after an original Modern Family. Revenge was flat with last week's series/season low 2.1 adults 18-49 rating.

Survivor was down two-tenths to a 2.5 adults 18-49 rating, compared with last week's 2.7 and is a new series low. Criminal Minds returned from repeats to earn a 3.0 adults 18-49 rating, even with its last original. CSI earned a 2.3, down a tenth from its last original and tying its series low

Betty White's Off Their Rockers earned a 1.3 adults 18-49 rating at 9PM and a 1.4 at 9:30, both down from last week's 1.7 18-49 rating and producing the series' lowest ratings to date. Rock Center with Brian Williams earned a 1.0, up a tenth from last week's 0.9 18-49 Rating. Law And Order: SVU earned a 1.8, up a tenth from last week's 1.7 18-49 rating.

On The CW, America's Next Top Model was the only new program on the CW and earned a 0.4 adults 18-49 rating, compared with last week's 0.5 adults 18-49 rating.


Late-night results are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Wednesday, May 2, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM FOX American Idol (8-10 PM) 4.6 13 16.299
CBS Survivor: One World 2.5 8 9.205
NBC Betty White's Off Their Rockers 1.3 4 5.008
ABC The Middle 2.0 7 6.605
CW The LA Complex -R 0.3 1 0.857
8:30PM ABC Suburgatory 2.0 6 5.801
NBC Betty White's Off Their Rockers 1.4 4 4.936
9:00 PM ABC Modern Family 4.0 11 9.950
CBS Criminal Minds 3.0 8 11.400
NBC Rock Center With Brian Williams 1.0 3 4.185
CW America's Next Top Model 0.4 1 1.047
9:30PM ABC Don't Trust the B in Apt. 23 2.4 6 5.851
10:00PM CBS CSI 2.3 6 9.742
ABC Revenge 2.1 6 7.090
NBC Law and Order: SVU 1.8 5 6.450

via NBC press note:

In Late-Night Metered Markets Wednesday night:

  • In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 3.0/7; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 3.1/7; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.4/7; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.5/4. 
  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 0.7/3; "Late Show," 0.6/3; "Nightline," 1.1/5; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.6/3.
  • At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.6/5 in metered-market households) tied CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.6/5).  In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.5/3 in 18-49) topped "Late Late Show" (0.4/3).
  • At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 1.0/4 in metered-market households and a 0.4/3 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters.


NOTE: All ratings are "live plus same day" from Nielsen Media Research unless otherwise indicated.
Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2012 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

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

Definitions: 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 football 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.

  • Bunny

    CT is the only sitcom that is 100% owned by ABC..
    they only have 29 eps until it reached syndication

    Apt 23 with a huge buzz,critical praised and support from ABC it will deff get renewed…

    Happy Endings is the odd man out..Abc burned off new eps surrounded by repeats and their ratings sink to a new low

    HE is the new Better Off Ted

  • eridapo

    Retentionistas?? Since when does retention matter on this site?

  • Tommy

    I bet if the CW moved “The LA Complex” to Wednesdays at 8 for new episodes they would probably get a .5 which would be fantastic considering how little money the show costs them.

  • okkk

    “Revenge” seems to be on the wrong night IMO. It would be a good move to positon it with “Scandal” or even Sundays with GCB.

  • carla

    I don’t watch it, but Criminal Minds does remarkably well in both the demo and total viewers.

    I’m surprised that Revenge doesn’t do better in both categories. The media seem to love it, the audience not so much.

  • beckseleven

    Lows all around it seems. Looks like HFO will be number one ten pm show again this week and Criminal minds and NCIS LA will tie for 9 pm top dramas.

    Revenge very low tonight. MF is miles ahead of all other ABC shows at the moment.

    CSI is not as strong as it seemed from that mini boost it got when Marg left.

    SVU and Smash failing weekly.

    At least there’s only a couple weeks left for the main shows to suffer this indignity :)

  • Alan

    CW should move LA Complex to Wednesdays 7/8C, they have to realize that is doing way better at that time slot

  • gregg

    max, you dont know much on how rating work. YES i do think Revengewill be renewed.

  • Mark

    Looks like Obama spiking the football for an entire hour didn’t spike ‘Rock Center’s’ ratings. LOL.

  • John A

    The appeal of Revenge has died down. Its doing ok but probably wont rise again this season. Hopefully it rises in the fall.

  • Michael

    Amanda, I think the way this is written is a little deceiving. To say Idol is ‘down from last week’s 4.8 to a 4.6′ is not accurate, as you are comparing last week’s final to this week’s preliminary. Last week’s preliminary was also a 4.6, meaning ‘Idol’ is actually quite steady compared to other shows that have been legitimately falling over the last month. I think that is an important point and the headline should be changed; this amazing show that’s still number 1 after 11 seasons should be commended!

  • Dennis

    now, csi ratings = csi: miami ratings

  • Rachel

    once again the l.a. complex gets higher overall viewers than on it’s new episode night. and with no lead-in!

  • KevinSW

    Well damn, like i said, The LA Complex is getting more viewers than it’s original airing.

  • Fennerbender

    Good for Apt 23 any rise at this time of year looks good and even better when your veteran lead-in is hitting season lows.

  • S.


    Scandal has the best lead-in ABC can offer to a 10 pm show. Being stable is not good when the lead-in has gone up and the show didn’t. Scandal doesn’t have a leg on anybody but GCB. Even so, one has to wonder if CGB wouldn’t be doing better in Scandal’s place with 3.3 lead-in instead of the 2.6 it gets from DH.

  • Fred

    Seems like every week now SVU’s second half hour is one or two tenths higher. Rock Center really is a drag.

  • cc

    Why is Betty White listed ahead of The Middle in the chart?

    I guess all those “old” HL viewers aren’t interested in BW?

  • SteveO

    Revenge is incredibly steady. Very very stable fanbase. I think it will grow over the summer once people have time to catch up, then a rise in the fall (then probable fall in the spring).

  • Kyle R

    People who say Happy Endings won’t be renewed are crazy.

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