TV Ratings Thursday:'Big Bang Theory' Wins Night as All CBS Shows Rise, 'American Idol' Down, 'The Office', 'Parks and Recreation' Up, 'Awake' & 'Missing' Hit Series Lows

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May 4th, 2012



Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 3.0/9 2.8/8 2.1/6 1.4/4 1.4/4 0.8/2
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 1.9/7 1.6/5 1.6/5 1.5/5 1.4/5 0.9/3
Total Viewers (million) 10.95 12.32 7.353 3.07 3.56 1.83


FOX was the number one network among adults 18-49, while CBS was on top in total viewers.

On CBS, Big Bang Theory was Thursday night's top program, scoring a 4.6 rating among adults 18-49, up 12% from last week's 4.1. Rules of Engagement earned a 2.7 adults 18-49 rating, an 8% increase from last week's 2.5. Person of Interest  got a 2.5 in adults 18-49 up from last week's 2.4. The Mentalist garnered a 2.4 adults 18-49 rating, up 9% from last week's 2.2.

On FOX, American Idol earned a 3.9 adults 18-49 rating, down from last week's 4.0. Touch got a 2.1 in adults 18-49, up 11% from last week's 1.9.

ABC's Missing scored a series low 1.1 adults 18-49 rating down 21% last week's 1.4. Grey's Anatomy earned a 3.2 in adults 18-49, down 3% from last week's 3.3. Scandal garnered a 2.1 adults 18-49 rating, up 8% from last week's 2.0.

On NBC,  Community earned a 1.4 among adults 18-49, even with last week's performance. 30 Rock got a 1.4 in adults 18-49, down 13% from last week's 1.6. The Office scored a 2.3  adults 18-49 rating, up 10% from last week's 2.1. Parks and Recreation garnered a 1.7 in adults 18-49, up 6% from last week's 1.6. Awake scored a series low 0.7 adults 18-49 rating d0wn from last week's 0.8.

The CW's Vampire Diaries scored a 1.1adults 18-49 rating even with last week.. Secret Circle earned a 0.6 in adults 18-49, up from last week's 0.5

Late-night ratings are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Thursday, May 3, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (Millions)
8:00 CBS The Big Bang Theory 4.6/15 13.27
FOX American Idol 3.9/12 15.05
NBC Community 1.4/5 3.28
ABC Missing 1.1/4 6.28
CW Vampire Diaries 1.1/4 2.44
8:30 CBS Rules of Engagement 2.7/8 9.01
NBC 30 Rock 1.4/4 3.06
9:00 ABC Grey's Anatomy 3.2/9 9.00
CBS Person of Interest 2.5/7 12.96
NBC The Office 2.3/7 4.44
FOX Touch 2.1/6 6.84
CW Secret Circle 0.6/2 1.23
9:30 NBC Parks and Recreation 1.7/5 3.35
10:00 CBS The Mentalist 2.4/7 12.67
ABC Scandal 2.1/6 6.78
NBC Awake 0.7/2 2.14


Via NBC press notes:

In Late-Night Metered Markets Wednesday night:

  • In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.5/6; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 2.5/6; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.2/8; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.5/5.
  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 0.7/3; "Late Show," 0.5/3; "Nightline," 1.0/4; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.5/3.
  • At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.3/4 in metered-market households) tied CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.3/4). In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.5/3 in 18-49) topped "Late Late Show" (0.3/2).
  • At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 0.9/4 in metered-market households and a 0.4/3 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters.

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

  • Max

    ABC has got to be more pleased with SCANDAL than they are with REVENGE at this point.

  • MattM

    I don’t think anything short of Grey’s reruns would do well in Missing’s spot. It’s a tough timeslot. Still pissed the ratings got this low. It’s baffling.

  • Ron

    GA will be up to a 3.3 and Scandal down to a 2.0 like last week and the week before I’m sure. Most things were up despite predictions the Avengers, NBA, NHL would cause drops

  • KS

    I don’t care but, I would like to say, there is a lot of difference between HoD’s 0.6 and TSC’s 0.6

  • Michael

    Vampire Diaries and Missing tied! :D

    RIP Missing. :(

  • DenverDean

    TM has got to go. To only pull a 2.4 against NBC’s 0.8 is ridiculous. (I don’t view ABC’s shows as it competition as much as NBC’s dramas.) Even CSI pulled a 2.3 against the very similar SVU.

  • One

    Missing can practically TASTE fifth place. Come on, Missing. You can do it. And then your failure will be complete…

  • NewEnglandMike

    What’s going on with POI?

    By the way, I think I’m the last person in the US still watching Awake. I really like it but I get why it’s a rating disaster.

  • Sid

    CW bubble shows by rank IMO:
    Gossip Girl

  • Jack

    Oh, Touch up! A Wonder!

  • SJ

    Wow, Scandal still steady. Down in total viewers, though. Every week.

    OK results for NBC’s comedies and I guess Touch is getting renewed with those anemic numbers.

    A January episode of Harry’s Law had a 1.1 rating and 6.41 million viewers. Missing had almost exactly the same skew last night. Unreal!

    The fact that Awake will be airing throughout sweeps just shows how far NBC has fallen.

  • mantin

    Scandal is growing on me, nice to see a show with THIS steady ratings. I hope it gets renewed…and as campy as it is, I also enjoy GCB…and Revenge…damn, what are the chances that all three get second seasons ?

  • senor chang

    At this point the ratings hardly matter, don’t they? I mean, it’s almost time for upfronts, anyhow.

    Anyway, glad to see a relatively stable night after a winter/spring of carnage.

    It is stunning how badly Awake has floundered in that slot (haven’t checked yet, but did the Firm beat it in viewers?). NBC may be better off sticking their syndication-bound comedies in the 10 slot next fall (Community and 30R) rather than risk losing their FOURTH Thursday drama in just two years.

  • DW

    a 1.1 on the cw is like a 4.6 on cbs. break open the booze and celebrate cw.

  • salim

    i think that nbc will take solace in that communty confortably beat missing, greys anatomy is soooo good, amazing writing. does this mean that cbs won the night??

  • Petar


    Next season you will cry! Give POI TBBT lead-in and will be beast! Still too much depends from his lead-in! Rules up tenth and POI rise tenth! I bet that is even in halfs! Like most CBS procedurals if start strong will finish strong but can’t gain in halfs! But if next season has luch with his lead-in(no matter at 9 or 10) and start 3.5 will finish 3.5! But like now when start 2.5 finish 2.5! I bet that gain again 3-4 million viewers but really strugle to gain demo from his lead-in!

  • Fischer

    Glad TOUCH went up. Altho the writing is starting to get bad.

  • Justin121

    Very likely


    Idol 4.0 – Grey’s 3.3 – Maybe Vamp 1.2 – Bang 4.7!


    Circle 0.5 uh, oh – Scandal 5th straight 2.0!!!

  • rob60990

    “ABC has got to be more pleased with SCANDAL than they are with REVENGE at this point.”

    lol Think again. Scandal is still doing worse than PP while Revenge is improving its timeslot for ABC.

  • João Paulo

    Person of Interest (I hope ajusted up) up just a little :(
    TBBT is good for me.

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