TV Ratings Thursday: 'Grey's Anatomy' & 'Scandal' Return Up, 'Big Bang Theory' Steady With Last Year + Premieres for 'Elementary' & 'Last Resort'

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September 28th, 2012


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 3.4/10 2.9/8 2.8/8 1.7/5 1.4/4 0.3/1
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 2.0/7 2.4/8 2.5/8 1.5/5 1.2/4 0.3/1
Total Viewers (million) 13.800 9.210 7.558 4.655 3.588 0.727


 The Thursday Night NFL Network Cleveland/Baltimore game was simulcast on the NBC affiliates in both markets. As a result the numbers for NBC are probably inflated and subject to more than typical adjustments in the final numbers

CBS was the number one network among adults 18-49 and total viewers.

On FOX, The X Factor garnered a 3.2 adults 18-49 rating, down  from last week's 3.5. Glee earned a 2.5. also down from last week's 2.9 adults 18-49 rating.

On CBS,the season premiere of The Big Bang Theory earned a 4.8, down just a tick from last year's 4.9 premiere 18-49 rating. The season premiere of Two and a Half Men earned a 3.5, compared with last year's Ashton Kutcher-inflated 10.7 premiere rating. The season premiere of Person of Interest earned a 2.9, down only two tenths from last year's 3.1 premiere rating. The series premiere of Elementary earned a respectable 3.1 adults 18-49 rating.

On ABC, the series premiere of Last Resort earned a 2.2 adults 18-49 rating. Your predictions were too optimistic. The season premiere of Grey's Anatomy earned a 4.3, up two tenths from last year's 4.1 premiere rating. Scandal premiered its second season also up to a 2.2 18-49 rating from last year's 2.0 premiere rating.

NBC's Saturday Night Live: Weekend Update special earned a 1.7, up a tenth after last week's 1.6 18-49 rating. Up All Night earned a 1.8, up half a ratings point  from last week's 1.3 adults 18-49 rating. The Office earned a 2.4, up three tenths, after last week's 2.1 adults 18-49 rating. Parks and Recreation earned a 2.1 rating up from last week's 1.7 rating. Rock Center earned a 1.2, up a tenth from last week's 1.1 rating. Its worth mentioning again that all of these numbers are likely inflated due to Thursday Night Football coverage and will look very different in the finals this afternoon.

On the CW, The Next was even with last week's 0.3 among adults 18-49.

Late-night ratings are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Thursday, September 27, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM CBS The Big Bang Theory 4.8 15 15.309
FOX The X Factor 3.2 10 9.192
ABC Last Resort -P 2.2 7 9.079
NBC Saturday Night Live: Weekend Update 1.7 6 5.433
CW The Vampire Diaries -R 0.3 1 0.771
8:30PM CBS Two and a Half Men 3.5 10 12.372
NBC Up All Night 1.8 5 4.455
9:00PM ABC Grey's Anatomy 4.3 12 11.546
CBS Person of Interest 2.9 8 14.271
FOX Glee 2.5 7 5.925
NBC The Office 2.4 7 5.23
CW The Next 0.3 1 0.683
9:30PM NBC Parks and Recreation 2.1 5 4.464
10:00 PM CBS Elementary -P 3.1 9 13.288
ABC Scandal 2.2 6 7.006
NBC Rock Center With Brian Williams 1.2 3 4.17


Late night ratings:

In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.8/7; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 2.9/8; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.1/8; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.6/5. 

  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 1.1/5; "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" (1.5/5 in metered-market households) beat CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.4/5).  In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.6/4 in 18-49) topped "Late Late Show" (0.5/3).

  • 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 ratings are "live plus same day" from Nielsen Media Research unless otherwise indicated.



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.


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.

  • SarahL

    Middling numbers for Scandal. It has only thirteen episodes not bad I suppose.

  • badman

    this is sad for last resort.. it seems like this timeslot is cursed for ABC.. i had hopes but… nothing can survive against TBBT!

    good start for elementary, it seems like it came to stay!!

  • Matthew

    Glee seems to be slowing down significantly as everyone else settles into their respective time slots. Dropping .4 from last week, it certainly doesn’t look like bait for the bear, but I am eager to see if invested fans will level off the ratings drop in order to keep it in safe territory for renewal(ie: The Office).

  • Kyle R

    How did NBC’s entire thursday lineup go up?

  • John_M

    Wow, CBS’s decision to shore up Thursday so far seems like a disaster

    Yup – lots of conclusions can be made from one event

  • Matt

    As much as I love glee, it was soooooo stupid to put them against the power house that is Grey’s Anatomy. It has no shot at doing well against that and Person of Interest. As soon as I heard they were moving it, I was like, “Good Luck.” Whoever thought of that is probably regretting it right about now.

  • Jonny

    What about halves? Thanks.

  • Sandy

    Jon73629, I would think CBS is pleased with how they did last night for all time periods. And Person of Interest held its own in spite of high 18-49 ratings for GA.

  • Petar Ivanov


    In next 2 months Grey will only drop, PoI is UPTREND and will grow.

  • John_M

    How did NBC’s entire thursday lineup go up?

    Reading is Fundamental

  • Tony ^_^

    You know what this means? “New Girl” is (as of right now) FOX’s #1 scripted show! :D

  • forg

    Wow at Grey’s Anatomy! Last Resort :( Scandal is on par with season 1 rating but losing 2 points from Grey’s ain’t good

    I thought TBBT will score 5 and give MF a close race but still great ratings. Surprised 2.5 Men lost a lot from TBBT to think it was the show that helped boost TBBT to be this ratings monster it is today, how the times have changed. Solid for POI and terrific for Elementary building over its lead in

    NBC was pre-empted by football right so witholding opinion but I hope Office and Parks won’t drop that hard

    X Factor is solid but Glee trending down now

  • MoHasanie

    Wow, TBBT only got a 4.8. Was expecting a 5.0+. Yikes for TAAHM. It was doing better on Mondays. Bad move by CBS. And the “power hour” didn’t even help POI which is clearly not a hit. The good news was that Elementary did well.
    I enjoyed TBBT, but TAAHM was a bad episode. Overall, these have been my favorite comedies this week:
    1. Modern Family
    2. The Middle
    3. 2 Broke Girls
    4. The Big Bang Theory
    5. How I met your mother

    WOW, Grey’s with a 4.3 is amazing. Usually I wouldn’t support Grey’s, but I want it to destroy the awful Glee. Although, since a character died last night, I’m expecting ratings to fall to low 3’s soon.

    Its interesting that The Office rose against competition.
    X factor survived the competition.

  • FOXkid

    Good thing Grey’s reigns on the time slot, I really hate these procedural drama…. so dull…

  • BJ

    Very excellent for BBT as shows in their sixth season usually sees decline in ratings.
    I expected more for 2.5 Men but pulling in 12 million viewers with a 3.5 rating in its 10th season is still impressive.
    Person of Interest may be off 6.5% in the 18-49 rating but it did improve one million viewers from last year.
    Elementary did very well. I think we’ll definitely see a full season pickup, right now.

    Scandal pulled in the same rating as Last Resort despite having Grey’s lead-in. I think Last Resort should move to the 10pm slot.

    NBC comedies will almost certainly adjust down.

    X Factor did very well but Glee might be in its final season unless the other Fox Shows outside of American Idol and Bones under perform immensely.

  • Gaius Bolling

    glee has been bad since mid season 2. i thought the ratings for last 2 weeks were ok but against heavy competition it got murdered. and it’s music sales are down too. on the other hand, x-factor did well against heavy competition and may even be adjusted up

  • CrimTV

    When Glee first started, I never thought it was last any more than 5 seasons at most, it’s a very genre-specific show that once the same thing happened every year, people would get extremelly bored of it! I still enjoy it, but I can understand how others find it cheesy and just bad, and I accept that. The same with Revenge, if it does well this season I see it having 4 seasons, not 8 or 9, just because of the premise.

  • steve

    That seems like a horribl number for Last Resort. Usually shows like that premiere very well, but it seems like people aren’t interested in sampling this show


    Thats not good for Last Resort… It had a good pilot

  • Zach

    Shocked that Up All Night went up and even grew out of its lead in. It did better than both Wednesday night comedies so maybe they weren’t so stupid for renewing it. I’d like to see what it could do behind Go On. Probably about the same as The New Normal. Not bad for Last Resort, but not great either. I think it could have done better after Grey’s than Scandal did. Scandal seems to have a very loyal audience and always gets the same numbers basically. Move it to the death slot and give last resort a chance to be a hit. Glee should be a goner, I see it falling bellow 5 million viewers and to a 2.0 before December. But fox is such a mess right now it could scrape by to next season.

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