TV Ratings Thursday: 'Two and a Half Men' Soars With Miley Cyrus, 'The Big Bang Theory' & 'Up All Night' Up; 'Person of Interest' 'Grey's Anatomy' & 'Elementary' Down

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October 19th, 2012


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 3.1/9 2.4/7 1.4/4 1.4/4 1.4/4 1.0/3
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 1.8/6 1.7/6 1.4/4 1.3/4 1.2/4 1.0/3
Total Viewers (million) 13.055 7.739 5.422 3.528 3.530 2.381


Note: The Thursday Night NFL Network 49ers/Seahawks game was simulcast on the ABC affiliate in San Francisco. As a result the 8-9pm numbers for ABC are likely inflated and subject to more than typical adjustments in the final numbers. The live baseball coverage on FOX is also subject to  more than the usual adjustment in the finals.

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

On CBS, The Big Bang Theory earned a 4.7, up 4% from last week's 4.5 adults 18-49 rating. Two and a Half Men scored a 4.0, up 14% from last week’s 3.5 adults 18-49 rating. Person of Interest garnered a 2.8 adults 18-49 rating, down 7% from a 3.0 for its last original episode.  Elementary scored a 2.3 among adults 18-49, down 8% from a 2.5 for its last original episode.

On ABC, Last Resort earned a 1.7 adults 18-49 rating up 6% from last week's 1.6 adults 18-49 rating. However, since the football game ended at around 8:30PM PST, this is the show most likely to be inflated by the SF ABC affiliate carrying the football game. Grey's Anatomy notched a 3.3 adults 18-49 rating, down 13% from a 3.8 for its last new episode. Scandal scored a 2.0adults 18-49 rating, even with its last original episode.

On FOX, the MLB Playoffs scored a preliminary 1.4 adults 18-49 rating from 8-11PM, though this will almost certainly be adjusted in the finals.

On NBC  30 Rock garnered a 1.3 adults 18-49 rating, matching last week’s performance. Up All Night earned a 1.4, up 27% from last week's 1.1. The Office scored a series-low 2.0 adults 18-49 rating, down 9% from a 2.2 for its last original episode. Parks and Recreation notched a 1.6 among adults 18-49, down 16% from a 1.9 for its last original episode and tying its series low.. Rock Center earned a 0.9 adults 18-49 rating, down 10% from a 1.0 for its last original episode.

On the CW, The Vampire Diaries earned a 1.2 adults 18-49 rating, down 25% from last week's 1.6. Beauty and the Beast garnered a 0.7 adults 18-49 rating, down 42% from last week's 1.2.


Late-night ratings are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Thursday, October 18, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (Millions)
8:00 CBS The Big Bang Theory 4.7/15 15.40
ABC Last Resort 1.7/5 7.32
FOX MLB Baseball Playoffs (8-11PM) - Live 1.4/4 5.51
NBC 30 Rock 1.3/4 3.33
CW Vampire Diaries 1.2/4 2.74
8:30 CBS Two and a Half Men 4.0/11 13.60
NBC Up All Night 1.4/4 3.24
9:00 ABC Grey's Anatomy 3.3/9 9.48
CBS Person of Interest 2.8/7 13.83
NBC The Office 2.0/6 4.27
CW Beauty and the Beast 0.7/2 2.03
9:30 NBC Parks and Recreation 1.6/4 3.43
10:00 CBS Elementary 2.3/6 10.84
ABC Scandal 2.0/5 6.42
NBC Rock Center  With Brian Williams 0.9/3 3.45


Late night ratings:

In Late-Night Metered Markets Thursday night:
> * In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.3/6 with an encore telecast; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 3.3/9 with an encore; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.0/7; 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,> "> 0.6/3 with an encore; "Late Show," 0.9/4 with an encore; "Nightline," 1.0/4; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.6/4.
> * At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.2/4 in metered-market households with an encore) trailed CBS's first-run "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.7/6). In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.4/3 in 18-49 with an encore) trailed "Late Late Show" (0.5/4).
> * At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 0.8/3 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.


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.

  • Holly


    just how far they’ve fallen when their brand new show is only averaging a point higher than a show in it’s fourth season…

    Couldn’t similar statements be made for CBS (compare NCIS or CSI to Vegas or Elementary, or Men to Partners), FOX (Bones or, sadly, Fringe to Mob Doctor), ABC (Grey’s to any of their new shows)? The only network who’s new shows are doing better than veterans is NBC, and that’s just because they had fallen so far already.

  • bluejays

    @eridapo – re the ten pm slot. I read an article by some ad exec stating that for broadcast the ten pm slot is now a situation where the biggest chunk of the audience at that time is now watching the dvr and it increases month on month year on year. Which explains the massive drops year on year for that time slot (in general, obviously there are outliers like Revolution) and compared to the earlier time slots which see gentler year on year falls.

    It seems like the only shows that really hold up in that slot now are watercooler shows like Walking Dead and Revolution, which makes me wonder if we’ll start seeing more reality stuff in that slot eventually?

  • Susan

    Grey’s Anatomy will probably be adjusted up, because as usual, it ran to 10:02. Due to this, Scandal will probably drop to the 1’s. Lol at people saying that Grey’s Anatomy did bad and could be cancelled. 1. It’s up over its year-ago broadcast in both total viewers and 18–49. 2. Networks don’t cancel shows that pull above the 3’s.

  • Luke

    @ Holly

    You’re actually right about those other shows on the other networks….I was just making a point as Arrow is it’s top new show. Come to think of it besides Revolution, I’m really struggling to think of any new, definitive ‘hits’ that this season has produced on any network…..times have not been good this year it seems.

  • Kaylie

    TVD and B&TB dropped because of Fox. Miley was good on 2.5 Men.

  • Holly


    You’re right, Arrow and Revolution are the closest things to real hits this season so far. After last year with Once, Revenge, PoI, 2 Broke Girls, and New Girl (I might be missing something in there), this year seems rather lackluster in comparison. Still, even Once didn’t beat Grey’s…

  • MSR

    I’m glad to see UAN do a little better this week. Hope it holds. I really like that show!

  • Holly


    I’m not sure the 10 pm shows lose out as much comparing Live to Live, but they do have a disadvantage on Live+SD.

  • Jonny C…. formerly Jon

    Im personally am getting depressed by Elemantary’s ratings…it’s a good show. But if it drops one more time I can see it being a bubble show.

  • Austin Lauran

    Is the reason that there aren’t that many new hit shows on CBS, ABC, and NBC due to the fact that people aren’t interested in seeing them compared to last year’s new shows?

  • eridapo

    @ bluejays,

    I think I read the same article, and I believe the person who was quoted was the head of programming at the FX networks. If I remember correctly, he stated that the biggest programming network at 10PM is the DVR which accounts for something like 44% of viewing during that hour.

    If the number is true, it explains a whole lot.

  • eridapo

    Okay… Found the article. It was in Adweek, and the 44% refers to DVR penetration.

    The quote:

    According to Leichtman Research Group, time-shifting technology has worked its way into 44 percent of all U.S. TV homes, creating a new ruling class of 50 million amateur schedulers.
    “The ‘DVR channel’ is the No. 1 network at 10 o’clock, by a two-to-one margin,” said FX president John Landgraf. “Viewers are using the hour to catch up on the shows, and it’s eating into the live ratings. As more and more dramas fail, there is no longer enough off-net material available to sustain the cable programming model.”


  • BigFatMouthFilledWithCream83

    How annoying was Miley Cyrus on 2.5M? Her speaking voice is horrendous. The only thing worse is her singing voice.

  • silvit


    Not regarding Jersey Shore, but quite a few of the newer set of reality shows skew male. It tends to be more the…documentary/job based? (for lack of a better description) ones like the alligator ones, reptile control, hand-fishing fishing, etc. as well as the storage shed ones, but that’s kind of an off-shoot of the pawn shows.

    Yes, I didn’t mention them because they are time and a dozen. But they are the types I’m referring to, which are very different from the Kardashians/Real Housewives/ Honey Boo Boo/Dance Moms etc.

    It’s easy to see the difference between the two types. And the male oriented ones are on History, Discovery or A&N, opposed to the female geared ones who are on E!, Oxygen,Bravo, Lifetime which are female-oriented channels.

  • eridapo

    @ Holly

    Using Nielsen’ own figures for 2010, 57% of DVR playback for 8PM shows falls within the same day, 45% for 9PM shows, and 33% for 10PM shows.


    So if live to live is about the same, the SD playback would account for why some 8PM shows on average rate 2/10 to 3/10s higher than 10PM. The difference in the 9PM (which is almost 5/10 higher on average than 10PM) might be due to higher PUT numbers at that hour.

    Nielsen also says:

    Programs recorded between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. were played back within the same day more than those airing at 10 p.m., which could impact live viewership of programs airing at 10 p.m. and later.

  • svpike

    TVD is hurting i bet because they made Elena a vamp. I personally think was a lame move and it turned me off the show.

  • silvit


    This only means that people don’t find the 10 pm offerings interesting enough and they’d rather watch their DVR-ed shows.

    The difference btw the people who watch tv at 8 or 10 is minimal. They just don’t watch broadcast tv. And this fact is supported by the great ratings of SOA, AHS, BBT repeats, the various realities on E!/History.

    People choose to NOT watch broadcast tv at 10.

    The president of FX clearly believes that 10 pm is a GREAT slot for scripted programming, as proved by the choice of airing there FX biggest hits.

  • alffan

    NBC has more serious problems than they will ever admit. Once “The Voice” goes on hiatus, and NFL ends, they are in big time trouble. They don’t have a night that can stand on its own without either of those shows.

    They need to hope “Revolution” can somewhat stand up on their own. Thursday is a very important night for advertisers. NBC may want to consider putting something there that can drive audience.

    If “Revolution” truly has built an audience – then why not move it to Thursday at 10pm and find something else to lead out of “The Voice” that could use the help.

    The only shows now that seem to have a built in audience are “Grimm” and “Parenthood”

  • Holly


    Do you really think anyone at NBC doesn’t realize they’re in a bad place?

  • silvit

    Why David Letterman was so high with an encore?
    He doesn’t get these ratings with originals.

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