TV Ratings Tuesday: 'NCIS' Rises, 'Glee' Falls, 'Cougar Town' Hits Series Low, 'America's Got Talent' Hits a Time Period High

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May 16th, 2012


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 3.2/9 2.8/8 2.5/7 1.7/5 1.6/5 0.4/1
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 1.7/6 2.0/6 2.4/8 1.0/3 1.8/6 0.4/1
Total Viewers (million) 16.14 8.58 6.03 7.78 4.06 0.83


CBS was the number one network for the night in adults 18-49 and total viewers.

On CBS, the season finale of NCIS was the number one program of the night, scoring a 3.5  adults 18-49 rating, up 13% from last week's 3.1. The two hour NCIS: Los Angeles season finale earned a 3.0 among adults 18-49, even with last week.

On NBC, America's Got Talent garnered a 3.4 adults 18-49 rating, a season high for NBC in the time period.At 10PM, Fashion Star got a 1.6  in adults 18-49, compared to a 1.3 last week when it aired at 8PM.

On FOX, the 8PM episode of  of Glee scored a 2.4 adults 18-49 rating, down 11% from last week's 2.7. At 9PM a second episode of Glee earned a 2.5 among adults 18-49.

On ABC, Cougar Town earned a 1.0 among adults 18-49, down 33% from a 1.5  at 8:30PM last week for a series low. For comparison, Last Man Standing got a 1.7 adults 18-49 in the time period last week. At 8:30PM, a second episode of Cougar Town also scored a 1.0  rating among adults 18-49. Dancing With the Stars Results garnered a 2.2 adults 18-49 rating, down 8% from last week for a series low for results shows. The Private Practice  season finale  received a 1.8 adults 18-49 rating, up 29% from last week's series low.

On the CW, the season finale of 90210 rated a 0.5 among adults 18-49, down from last week's 0.6. L.A. Complex got a 0.2 adults 18-49 rating matching last week's series low.


Late-night results are below the primetime data.

Broadcast primetime ratings for Tuesday, May 15, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (Millions)
8:00 CBS NCIS (Season Finale) 3.5/11 18.70
NBC America's Got Talent (8-10PM) 3.4/10 10.41
FOX Glee 2.4/8 6.03
ABC Cougar Town 1.0/3 3.35
CW 90210 (Season Finale) 0.5/2 1.09
8:30 ABC Cougar Town 1.0/3 3.31
9:00 CBS NCIS: Los Angeles (9-11PM) (Season Finale) 3.0/8 15.12
FOX Glee 2.5/7  6.03
ABC Dancing With the Stars Results 2.2/6 12.94
CW L.A. Complex 0.2/1 0.57
10:00 ABC Private Practice (Season Finale) 1.8/5 7.05
NBC Fashion Star (Season Finale) 1.6/4 4.92



Via NBC Press Note:


In Late-Night Metered Markets Tuesday night:

  • In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.7/7; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 2.8/7; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.3/8; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.5/5 with an encore.
  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 0.8/4; "Late Show," 0.7/3; "Nightline," 1.0/4; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.5/3 with an encore.
  • At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.4/5 in metered-market households) trailed CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.5/5). 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 0.9/4 in metered-market households and a 0.4/3 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters.


NOTE: All national 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.


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 and Numbers 102.

  • Julia


    I guess that depends on when they are going to air it… If they start it in September and it does well, maybe they will order more. But when it starts in January I can’t see how they want to order more

    I don’t know

  • ron

    Even TSC had better rating it the finale than 90210 what is that¿? 0.0

  • Ram510

    Sad to see Cougar Town down. I figured it would be up, hopefully it will be for the finale

  • K

    Glee is slowly dying…

  • SteveO

    If Glee can AT LEAST hold these levels next fall after X Factor, it’s fine. Plus they already have a syndication deal, so yeah.

  • Rebecca

    Watched CT live last night and just finished seeing both Glee episodes online. Enjoyed all of them. Too bad CT isn’t on next week but the week after; two more episodes remain on ABC that night. The only new episodes I’ve got that week besides the season finale for Touch.

  • Michael

    Ron, 90210 (4th season) at 0.5, Secret Circle (1st season) season finale barely recovered to a 0.6.

  • MarcJames87

    I have never watched 90210 but it was always going to be renewed. Not only has it stayed stable, It will hit 100 episodes in S5 and like GG The CW will try and find a good syndication deal for it.

  • KS

    I personally think, next is the final season of 90210 and Gossip Girl. This is not because of today’s ratings, but I don’t see 90210 going beyond 5 seasons under Mark P. rule, it being a tween show.

  • Mi

    @Rachel so thank you for teaching me manners darling ;P

    On topic, considering FOX, CW, and ABC were hurt by the competition, I don’t think the drops this week really matter, and Couger Town already found a new home, so lucky Couger Town fans.

  • Bunny

    I’m glad CT found a new home! Good for the show!

  • Brandy

    Hazel,Idoubt it. It’s announced that GGs next season will be its last and have only 11 episodes.Also, the actors want to move on and with the shows ratings plummet this season(one 0.4, a lot of 0.5-0.6 and below a million viewers five times(I think) I really don’t think they will or should. I say this as a big GG fan.

  • Robert Connolly

    A network needs to bring back a variety show ala Carol Burnette. I think it would work.

  • Ultima

    anyone thinking the cw will announce next season as 90210?s last at upfronts?

    No. 90210 is the only CW drama at or close to synidcation that is produced exclusively by CBS. It’s probably best for them to leave it on the air as long as possible at this point.

  • Rachel


    Oh, I only learned from the best sweetheart.

  • MarcJames87

    @Brandy I agree 11 episodes is enough to give GG a good send off.

  • Ultima

    I give it 2 or 3 more years.

    American Idol is still the highest rated show on TV and this is the first year its year-to-year losses have outpaced the general broadcast decline by a significant amount.

    It will be on for years to come.

  • Michael

    The 100-episode milestone for syndication has been lowered to 88 episodes. 90210 is above 88 episodes, after last night’s finale!

  • Kellix

    I blame Lindsay Lohan on glee for 90210 0.5 rating!

  • Charmed

    I hope 90210 lasts as long as the original but with those ratings, I don’t think it will make it past season 6 :(

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