TV Ratings Thursday: 'The Big Bang Theory' Falls, 'The Vampire Diaries' Returns Up, 'Beauty & The Beast' Debuts Well for The CW + Vice Presidential Debate

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October 12th, 2012


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 2.7/7 2.4/6 1.9/5 1.7/4 1.4/4 1.4/4
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 2.0/6 1.9/6 1.5/4 1.2/4 1.4/4 1.4/4
Total Viewers (million) 9.353 6.798 5.728 6.911 3.320 3.466


 The Thursday Night NFL Network Steelers/Titans game was simulcast on the CW affiliate in Pittsburgh and the FOX affiliate in Nashville. As a result the numbers for FOX and the CW are probably inflated and subject to more than typical adjustments in the final numbers

Note: Due to live coverage of the first Presidential Debate on ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX, the entire primetime line-up is subject to more than the usual adjustments in the nationals.

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

On CBS, The Big Bang Theory earned a 4.2, down seven tenths from last week's 4.9 adults 18-49 rating. Two and a Half Men scored a 3.4, down two tenths from last week's 3.6 adults 18-49 rating.

On ABC, Last Resort earned a 1.6 adults 18-49 rating down from last week's 1.9  adults 18-49 rating.

On FOX, The X Factor scored a 2.9,  adults 18-49 rating down from last week's 3.2.

On NBC  30 Rock was even with last week's 1.4 adults 18-49 rating. Up All Night earned a 1.2, down two tenths from last week's1.4

On the CW, the season premiere of The Vampire Diaries earned a 1.6, up from last year's 1.5 premiere rating. Beauty and the Beast debuted to a 1.3. For once, your votes were too pessimistic!

Coverage of the Vice Presidential debate earned a 2.1 on CBS, a 2.1 on NBC, a 2.0 on FOX, and a 1.8 on ABC. However these are live numbers and likely for more adjustment in the finals. 

Note: Since the debate is commercial-free, ratings will be not be counted in the final national ratings.

Late-night ratings are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Thursday, October 11, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM CBS The Big Bang Theory 4.2 13 13.767
FOX The X Factor 2.9 8 8.25
ABC Last Resort 1.6 4 6.93
CW The Vampire Diaries 1.6 5 3.483
NBC 30 Rock 1.4 4 3.824
8:30PM CBS Two and a Half Men 3.4 9 11.74
NBC Up All Night 1.2 3 3.462
9:00PM CBS Vice Presidential Debate 2.1 5 10.397
NBC Vice Presidential Debate 2.1 5 6.771
FOX Vice Presidential Debate 2.0 5 5.345
ABC Vice Presidential Debate 1.8 4 6.902
CW Beauty and the Beast -P 1.3 3 3.158


Late night ratings:

* 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," 2.1/5; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 2.6/6; 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," 0.7/3; "Late Show," 0.5/2; "Nightline," 0.8/3; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.5/3. * At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.3/4 in metered-market households) beat CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.1/4). 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 0.8/3 in metered-market households and a 0.3/3 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.


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.

  • John_M

    Oh … that is interestings. If I recall correctly, a 1.6 was TVD’s peak during the previous season, so it looks like things are going well for the CW.

    or the NFL is very popular in pittsburgh

  • John_M

    Thursday usually has a lot more shows too.

    Gotta wonder how the networks felt when they said ‘thursday night debate’ and then ‘vice president debate’ too – it’s usually the ‘big night’ for prime time.

  • Holly


    You might want to read Robert’s comment from a couple of minutes ago:

    No adjustment down for Vampire Diaries and Beauty and the Beast adjusted down only a tenth.

  • Ultima

    Gotta wonder how the networks felt when they said ‘thursday night debate’ and then ‘vice president debate’ too – it’s usually the ‘big night’ for prime time.

    I’m pretty sure the networks expect that there will be four debates and they will air on four different nights Monday through Friday. The last time there wasn’t a Thursday debate was 1996 (only three debates that year).

  • thesnowleopard

    @Petar Ivanov

    How high or low network shows premiere versus previous years has nothing to do with your original statement, which was that B&B was definitely going to crash and burn–based on a single, overnight, preemption-laden data point for its series premiere. What are you going to predict next using that method, the winner of next year’s Kentucky Derby?

    Also, shows don’t always premiere lower. Arrow didn’t. Your “maths” are just grammatically-challenged guesstications.

  • Rooks

    Time to abandon ship as far as LR goes. B&B may survive on the CW if it doesn’t fall too much next week.

  • thesnowleopard

    Yeah, ’cause a third of the demo of its current occupant is so much better to crazed fans in denial.

    When are Nikita fans going to understand that it was moved off Thursdays to Fridays because it lost half its audience and demo in its first season? Why is it so hard to understand that the CW does not exist to make you happy, especially when you put down all of its other shows and make it obvious you don’t intend to watch any of them?

  • thesnowleopard

    @Robert Seidman
    Interesting. Also very good news for the CW that it could stand up even against preemptions. Four shows north of 1.0 after an abysmal start to the week must feel like quite a nice change. Whatever else they’re doing, they’re certainly getting the word out.

    As far as the VP debate, the recent flood of political psychos onto the boards makes me quite happy to discuss Kristin Kreuk’s decent stagefighting vs. still-questionable acting, instead, thank you very much.

  • Bliss

    @robert seidman

    I was right.. VD was not adjusted and batb down one tenth. Thus CW was least affected. :-)

  • night magic

    i was disappointed with the delena scenes for season 4 ep 1 .Damon being told off because he would have saved Elena was stupid !!!

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