TV Ratings Wednesday: 'The X Factor' Rises, 'Survivor' Premiere Flat, 'Big Brother' Finale Down

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September 20th, 2012


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 3.5/10 2.8/8 1.4/4 1.4/4 1.1/3 0.4/1
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 3.4/12 1.6/5 1.3/5 1.0/3 0.7/2 0.4/1
Total Viewers (million)  9.377 9.324 3.402 4.879 3.643 0.953


FOX was the number 1 network with adults 18-49 and with total viewers.

On FOX, The X Factor garnered a 3.5 adults 18-49 rating, up 6% from last week's 3.4

On CBS, the 90 minute season premiere of Survivor: Philippines earned a 3.1 adults 18-49 rating, matching  the premiere of Survivor: One World on Wednesday, February 15, 2012 and  in line with your predictions. It was down 9% from a 3.4 for  last fall's premiere on September 14, 2011 when the show was not competing with The X Factor. The 90 minute season finale of Big Brother scored a 2.5 adults 18-49 rating, up  from a 2.1 for last week's episode, but down 14%  from a 2.9 rating for last season's finale on Wednesday, September 14, 2011

On the CW, Oh Sit! scored a 0.4  among adults 18-49, equaling last week's performance.

Late-night results are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Wednesday, September 19, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (millions)
8:00 FOX The X Factor (8-10PM) 3.5/10 9.38
CBS Survivor: Philippines (8-9:30PM) - Premiere 3.1/10 11.22
NBC The Voice - R 1.7/5 5.42
ABC The Middle - R 1.1/4 4.48
CW Oh Sit! 0.4/1 0.97
8:30 ABC Suburgatory - R 1.0/3 3.54
9:00 ABC Modern Family - R 1.6/5 4.68
NBC Law & Order: SVU - R 1.2/3 4.74
CW Supernatural - R 0.3/1 0.94
9:30 CBS Big Brother (9:30-11PM) Finale 2.5/7 7.42
ABC Suburgatory - R 1.2/3 3.58
10:00 NBC Revolution - R 1.2/4 4.47
ABC Revenge - R 0.7/2 2.79


In Late-Night Metered Markets Wednesday night:

  • In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.4/6; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 2.0/5; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 2.7/7; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.3/4.
  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 0.8/4; "Late Show," 0.6/3; "Nightline," 0.9/4; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.6/3.
  • At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.2/4 in metered-market households) beat CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.0/4). In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.4/3 in 18-49) topped "Late Late Show" (0.3/2).
  • At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 0.7/3 in metered-market households with an encore and a 0.2/2 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.

  • Silvio

    @Remote Patrolled
    By a definition there is no such thing as “good reality”

  • rob60990

    “Thanks. Is there any info why ABC start later their new show nashville. Thanks again.”

    There’s a presidential debate on Oct 3 so I will guess ABC did not want to premiere Nashville on Sept 26, only to have it gone for 2 weeks. Also ABC has the chance to use Modern Family lead-in on both The Neighbors & Nashville.

  • POI – amazing cliffhanger finale tonight


    Which network air this presidential debate or they all air the same thing.

  • rob60990

    “Which network air this presidential debate or they all air the same thing.”

    All networks air it. Pretty sure its from 9-11.

  • Silvio

    Once again you’re showing lack of knowledge of TV business.
    You can’t compare ratings of scripted and unscripted shows (or for that matter either of it with sports). It’s mixing apples and oranges, reality shows have no syndication revenue, no DVD sales, no international sales. In fact, they often pay license fee to original show authors from another country. Those expensive reality shows on broadcast must have big ratings or they’ll die (hopefully soon).

    Those average ratings across of all type of shows are meaningless, it’s only for networks’ bragging ratings – profit is what counts. Look no further than Olympics. Despite huge ratings, NBC actually lost money on it (though NBCUniversal claims they managed to somehow break even, thanks to sister cable networks). It’s not like with scripted shows, it’s not all in A18-49 ratings, there’s more than inexperienced eye catches.

  • Jonathan

    The Voice will fall when it goes against Dancing With The Stars: All Stars! I have a feeling the show is gonna rate really high this year!

  • Colin

    HAHAHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA to all X Factor haters who called the show already dead.^^

  • Holly


    You can’t compare ratings of scripted and unscripted shows (or for that matter either of it with sports). It’s mixing apples and oranges, reality shows have no syndication revenue, no DVD sales, no international sales. In fact, they often pay license fee to original show authors from another country. Those expensive reality shows on broadcast must have big ratings or they’ll die (hopefully soon).

    You are right about the first part, but horribly wrong about the last sentence. “Unscripted” shows are generally speaking much, much cheaper than scripted shows. The average 1-hour scripted drama costs around $2-3 million per episode. Unscripted shows can run in the hundreds of thousands per episode. Even the more expensive ones can offset costs by having a lot more product placement (e.g. everyone on X-Factor drinking Pepsi).

  • eridapo


    Exactly. The ratings for this and last week are meaningless because they were achieved against no real competition. Only when all the networks have new programming could we say whether a show is doing better than expected or not.

  • Mon

    DWTS: All Stars? Hah! one star is not enough

  • TVDude

    So a 3.4 is horrible, but a 3.5 is ok? Got it. There was nothing on last night, cable or broadcast. We watched reruns on Netflix.

  • joterri

    Go Survivor!!!!

  • Agnes


    A bounce of 0.1? Tieing Survivor 8-9? I’m sure FOX aren’t doing cartwheels or going HAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAA. Can’t wait for next week when Modern Family & Criminal Minds duel battle with it….

  • chrisss

    @ Silvio

    I disagree with a some of what you said. For one, from the network’s perspective, scripted shows that aren’t produced by the network’s sister production company can easily be compared to unscripted shows- it’s all about the ad money.

    And two, whilst scripted shows are definitely more likely to be sold into syndication or sold to foreign networks, unscripted shows can be too. For example, The Factor US is shown here in the UK and Dancing with the Stars was sold to the Game Show Network.

  • eridapo


    XF 2.9/7.78 3.2/8.59 3.9/10.21 4.1/10.92

    BB14 2.6/7.79 2.5/7.27 2.5/7.21

    Survivor 2.9/10.74 3.2/11.22 3.3/11.71

  • Jazzer

    There were some true idiots on here last week calling for X Factor’s death when it peaked with 4.1 at 9:30pm. Keep living in dream world.

    FOX is in trouble this year though they’ll be in 4th place and NBC will rise to 3rd.

  • Pablo

    how is. 11 million viewers flat ? Tv by the numbers you have turds writing for you.

  • KarenM

    I watched Survivor and it was okay but why does the show need Lisa Whelchel as a survivor? It’s definitely lost it’s touch. CBS needs to find another show to replace it.

  • Pablo

    @Silvio Shut you pie hole.

  • Alana

    I wish X-Factor would go straight to the 4 Groups and Judges competition. I don’t think people realize from the audition rounds that the show takes on quite a different dimension once the auditions are done.

    I think they would hook viewers better if they went straight into the 4 Groupings right away.

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