TV Ratings Thursday: 'Big Bang Theory' Not Quite as Big, 'Grey's Anatomy', 'Person of Interest' & 'The Office' Down, 'Scandal' & '30 Rock' Up

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November 30th, 2012


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 3.3/9 2.5/7 2.1/6 1.7/5 1.2/3 1.1/3
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 1.9/6 2.4/8 1.7/5 1.6/5 1.0/3 1.1/3
Total Viewers (million) 13.392 7.016 6.860 4.013 3.398 2.678

Last night’s Thursday Night Football game (Saints/Falcons) was simulcast on the FOX affiliate in New Orleans and the CW affiliate in Atlanta. The CW was also preempted in Baltimore for high school football. As a result, the FOX and CW numbers may be inflated  and subject to more than typical adjustments in the finals.

CBS won the night in adults 18-49 and in Total Viewers.

On CBS, The Big Bang Theory earned a 5.4 adults 18-49 rating, down 5% from a season-high 5.7 on November 15. Most of your predictions were too optimistic.  Two and a Half Men garnered a 4.1 among adults 18-49 even with its most recent episode’s performance. Person of Interest scored a 2.9 adults 18-49 rating down 6% from a 3.1 on November 15. Elementary notched a 2.2 adults 18-49 rating, down4%  from  a 2.3 on November 15 and tying its series low.

On FOX,  The X Factor earned a 2.7 adults 18-49 rating down 4% from last week’s 2.8.  Glee scored a 2.2 adults 18-49 rating up 47% from a 1.5 on Thanksgiving. However, football preemptions may have impacted these numbers.

On ABC, the first episode of  Last Resort to air since its cancellation was announced garnered a series-low 1.0 adults 18-49 rating down 17% from a 1.2 on November 15. Grey’s Anatomy tied its season low with a 3.0 adults 18-49 rating down 6% from November 15’s 3.2. Scandal earned a season high 2.2 adults 18-49 rating up 10% from a 2.0 on November 15.

On NBC, 30 Rock scored a 1.3 adults 18-49 rating up 8% from a 1.2 on November 15. Up All Night garnered a 1.2 adults 18-49 rating down 8% from a 1.3 for its November 15 episode. The Office notched a series low 1.9 among adults 18-49 down 10% from a 2.1 on November 15. Parks & Recreation earned a series low 1.4 adults 18-49 rating down 18% from a 1.7 on November 15. Rock Center garnered a 0.9 adults 18-49 rating, down 18% from two weeks ago.

On the CW, Vampire Diaries scored a 1.5 adults 18-49 rating up 15% from a 1.3 on November 15. Beauty and the Beast garnered a 0.8 adults 18-49 rating up 33% from a 0.6 on November 15. However, these numbers may be inflated due to being preempted for NFL football in Atlanta and high school football in Baltimore.


Late-night ratings are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Thursday, November 29, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (Millions)
8:00 CBS The Big Bang Theory 5.4/16 17.15
FOX The X Factor 2.7/8 8.23
CW Vampire Diaries 1.5/4 3.20
NBC 30 Rock 1.3/4 3.61
ABC Last Resort 1.0/3 5.20
8:30 CBS Two and a Half Men 4.1/11 13.81
NBC Up All Night 1.2/3 2.97
9:00 ABC Grey's Anatomy 3.0/8 8.71
CBS Person of Interest 2.9/7 14.33
FOX Glee 2.2/6 5.80
NBC The Office 1.9/5 3.89
CW Beauty and the Beast 0.8/2 2.15
9:30 NBC Parks and Recreation 1.4/4 3.04
10:00 CBS Elementary 2.2/6 10.36
ABC Scandal 2.2/6 6.67
NBC Rock Center 0.9/2 3.44


Late night ratings:

via press note

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," 2.2/6 with an encore; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.3/8; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.6/5 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," 0.6/3 with an encore; "Nightline," 1.1/5; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.5/3 with an encore.
> * At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.3/4 in metered-market households with an encore) beat CBS's first-run "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.2/4). In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.4/3 in 18-49 with an encore) tied "Late Late Show" (0.4/2).
> * At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 0.8/3 in metered-market households with an encore and a 0.3/2 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.

  • Petar

    @CBS should have given POI or SBG’s that post superbowl boost!

    What is SBG?

    @I remember very clear when Bill said that like almost every show on TV POI skews more female so please take you stupid fan exude Bingo somewhere else

    Well Bill is wrong too. POI is one of the few male skewing shows(with fox animation and football games) its not ‘fan exude Bingo’ just simple math. (althou POI and tbbt are only shows that fall ratings are up on cbs and now) When footbal is over you will see much better POI ratings. last season january february march was 3+ in demo if can grow again will hit few season highs and at least one series highs.

  • Tim

    Since Parks and Rec will reach the lucky syndication number before this season ends, will it possibly be renewed with its current ratings? Hopefully, I love it!

    Modern Family amazing as always, Suburgatory great too.

    Glee losing its steam…and Last Resort! I love it but HORRIBLE for such a good show.

  • Tim

    Woops at my last post…seems I was halfway between the Wednesday and Thursday posts!

  • Brian J


    I think the better reason for giving “POI” the Superbowl slot is that it could have boosted itself while also possibly boosting “Elementary.” Two birds, one stone.

  • Petar

    @Thank you CBS.
    Last night’s POI was awesome as always – a very intelligently written show.

    Well a litle late. Before season strated i said that POI is best written show.

    @ POI was awesome. The backstory with Finch and Grace was so amazing. Pellegrino’s different take on his guest character was great

    just brilliant.

  • Petar

    @ About the 10PM slot I know the Scandal fans are happy, but lets be honest about those numbers. Unlike other ABC shows at that time, Scandal has by far the best lead-in and it only has one (Rock Center does not count in my book) to compete against. Both Elementary and Scandal should be doing better because they really lack any real competition in either broadcast or cable at this time.

    YEP I

  • omar

    Elementary steady and i like it

  • Petar

    @About the 10PM slot I know the Scandal fans are happy, but lets be honest about those numbers. Unlike other ABC shows at that time, Scandal has by far the best lead-in and it only has one (Rock Center does not count in my book) to compete against. Both Elementary and Scandal should be doing better because they really lack any real competition in either broadcast or cable at this time.

    ME: If ANY of theese was on monday against RVN instead of h5o and castle they will collapse. ONLY thing that save scandal and elementary is MISSING NBC on 10 pm at thursdays.

  • maxine

    “@Brian J @Petar:

    I think the better reason for giving “POI” the Superbowl slot is that it could have boosted itself while also possibly boosting “Elementary.” Two birds, one stone.”

    Smart idea. ICAM! Hope some CBS big heads are reading fan’s comments here!
    BTW, I’m still not into Elementary :( ….

  • Just Desserts


    For a fan of Person of Interest, which is very much lead-in dependent, you seem pretty proud of yourself.

    Like Revolution, it’s only doing good right now because it’s lead-in comedies have monster ratings.

    If it were to stand-alone on Sundays of Tuesdays at 10, where The Mentalist and Vegas are right now, it’s going to collapse.

    So far Grey’s have beaten it all season. At least Scandal has risen despite negative expectations.

  • Petar

    @It would be good to remember that POI droped big time in April and May 2011 from 3.0 to 2.4-2.6 rating (due to some sport competition). This was surprising since it was doing 3.3 and 3.4 in March. And the season finale was only 2.5. So it might rise in spring but it could (and will most likely) fall again.

    That is true. You are right. When footbal was over POI was with huge uptrend and when NBA play-offs(NFL draft too) started go down big again. Too much sport affected. BUT this fall is with better fall ratings, may be won’t go so down and in may.

  • maxine

    “@Just Desserts …For a fan of Person of Interest, which is very much lead-in dependent, you seem pretty proud of yourself.”

    Hmmm .. as I remember POI did pretty well when Rob (Schneider), which got cancelled mid season last year, was it’s lead-in.

  • Brenda

    I love scandal its finally getting the promo it imo deserves. Its my fav show on tv right now. I think the ratings will go up for next ep as well, considering what happened at the very very end of the last ep. And even this big scandal fan thought the ep was a lil slow till the last ten minutes. If they hype the who shot the president promo, I think it will go up as well.

    I know its a small fanbase but its very consistent, those who tuned in have basically stuck with the show.

  • Networkman

    Parks & Rec should be performing better airing after The Office. It does not look good to see it garner less total viewers than 30 Rock. I would hate to imagine its ratings if it were airing against The Big Bang Theory.

    ABC has to be really pleased with Scandal. It has been one of their most consistent performers. With Nashville struggling, it only helps improves Scandal chances. This show has the opportunity to grow if nurtured properly. It has not tied Elementary in the demo. I know CBS can’t wait for the Superbowl in order for Elementary to gain popularity.

  • Petar

    @As our eastern European friend, Petar Ivanov, would say “POI is the Best Show” and will beat “the sorry excuse of a show call Greys. Once Football is over, POI will see its ratings rise while Greys will go back to nothing.”

    Thanks man. I love you. You are smart – the only one who call me right, not russian guy. RUSSIA is not even close too Bulgaria.

    @That’s like saying BBT will never be the “hit” Friends was… different eras, tv is different today than 10 years ago.. than even 5 years ago

    OR like our american friend eridapo will say (at least for 10 pm) even than last year.

  • Petar

    @For a fan of Person of Interest, which is very much lead-in dependent, you seem pretty proud of yourself.”

    poi is not lead-in dependent, sport dependent will be true…. lead-in not. LAST season CBS partners problems was in thursdays with how to be gentelmen and rob but poi was ok.

  • Just Desserts


    Are you kidding me? The ratings for Rob wasn;t bad. It just wasn;t good enough.

    CBS always cancels the lowest rated comedy no matter how high they rate.

    The ratings for Rob was actually good by any other network;s standards so I think that serves as a warning for fans of Elementary.

  • silvit


    Re: Do No Harm clip

    Terrible, terrible clip. And what’s up with the camera following the actor? It makes me want to throw up.

  • Just Desserts


    What do you mean it;s not lead-in dependent?

    Person of Interest pretty much copies the ratings of its lead-in or gets 75%.

    Switch it up with The Good Wife and let;s see what it would get. ;)

  • Chris

    @ Just Desserts POI has very solid ratings, we should all be able to agree on that. CBS was hoping that putting a higher rating comedy in front of it would help, but it hasn’t…. but I have to say, that just shows that it is not lead-in dependent. I don’t watch 2 and a half men… and I don’t think many POI people probably do. I think no matter what it has in front of it, it will have similar numbers. Rob and ROE had nowhere close to the ratings of 2.5 men, yet the ratings are pretty similar. If we had seen it explode this year, we could say it relies heavily on the lead-in, but it doesnt

    It’s a stand alone show. 2.5 men doesn’t really appeal to the same audience as POI

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