TV Ratings Wednesday: 'American Idol' Down From Last Year, But Still Dominates + 'Nashville', 'CSI' & 'Arrow' Rise (Updated)

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January 17th, 2013

Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 6.0/16 2.5/7 2.1/6 1.6/4 1.0/3 0.8/2
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 4.9/15 1.9/6 1.3/4 1.5/5 0.9/3 0.5/2
Total Viewers (million) 17.900 7.470 10.668 3.906 2.599 2.895

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

UPDATE: We’ve received time zone adjusted ratings (essentially, finals) and American Idol's total viewers last night went up to 17.9 million from 17.8. There was no change to the 6.0 adults 18-49 rating.

On FOX, the premiere of season 12 of American Idol earned a 6.0, down 19% from last year's 7.4 among adults 18-49. This is the lowest premiere rating since the first season (which aired in the summer). Your predictions were too optimistic.

On ABC, The Middle earned a 2.3, down a tenth from last week's 2.4 adults 18-49 rating. The Neighbors garnered a 1.9, down two tenths from last week's 2.1. Modern Family scored a 4.3, down four tenths from last week's 4.7 adults 18-49 rating. Suburgatory earned a 2.4, down two tenths from last week's 2.6 adults 18-49 rating.  Nashville notched a 2.2, up from last week's 2.1 adults 18-49 rating.

On CBS, Criminal Minds returned to a 2.8, down three tenths from its last original's 3.1. CSI earned a 2.3, up a tenth from its last original's 2.2.

On The CW, Arrow returned to a 1.1, up a tenth from its last original's 1.0 rating a month ago. Supernatural was even with its last original's 0.9.

Late-night results are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Wednesday, January 16, 2013:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM FOX American Idol -P 6.0 16 17.90
ABC The Middle 2.3 7 8.201
CBS NCIS -R 1.1 3 8.375
CW Arrow 1.1 3 3.127
NBC Whitney -R 0.8 2 2.663
8:30PM ABC The Neighbors 1.9 5 6.166
NBC Guys With Kids -R 0.8 2 2.355
9:00 PM ABC Modern Family 4.3 11 11.019
CBS Criminal Minds 2.8 7 12.532
CW Supernatural 0.9 2 2.071
NBC Law & Order: SVU -R 0.6 2 2.73
9:30PM ABC Suburgatory 2.4 6 6.351
10:00PM CBS CSI 2.3 6 11.100
ABC Nashville 2.2 6 6.541
NBC Chicago Fire -R 1.0 3 3.447


via press note:

In Late-Night Metered Markets Wednesday night:


* In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.5.7; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 2.7/7; and ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 2.3/6.


* In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 Wednesday results were: " The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, " 0.7/3; "Late Show," 0.6/3; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.8/4.


* From 12:35-1:05 a.m. ET Wednesday night, ABC's "Nightline" averaged a 1.5/5 in metered-market households and a 0.4/3 in 18-49 in the Local People Meters.


* From 12:35-1:35 a.m. ET, "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.3/5 in metered-market households) beat CBS's "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) tied "Late Late Show" (0.4/2).


* At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 0.8/4 in metered-market households with an encore 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: ©2013 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.

  • Juan

    Suburgatory got a 2.6 last week I’m pretty sure, anyway great for Nashville, those are very solid numbers for a 10 show and not bad for the abc comedies, just down a few tenth against very big competition

  • Oliver


    The pay-packets are tiny on a per-hour basis. Idol runs for 60+ hours/yr.

  • American

    TBBT’s last new episode got ~2 million more than Wed. Idol. Ha ha ha…

  • Michael

    I wish these reality TV shows would stop focusing so heavily on the judges, I want more emphasis on the actual talent.

  • Yessir

    Fox will probably cancel X-Factor after next year. to somewhat sustain Idol ratings and avoid it getting any lower.

    With only 2 singing contests left this will help out both The Voice and Idol, but Idol has TBBT to worry about now while TV practically dominates on mondays and tuesdays so they like Petar suggested will prove to be the real winner as far as singing contests goes.

  • Alfie :(

    Was one of the best episodes of this wonderful Supernatural Season 8. Supernatural is Awesome!!! :D

  • Petar Ivanov

    @Ultima who said:
    Which is my point exactly. People ignore how well Idol does because it’s not pulling the monster ratings that it was a few years ago. You think The Voice looks like a big hit, yet it will almost certainly finish the season behind Idol.

    YEP you are right here. I agree. Definitely old shows with monster ratings before take bad heat until new shows which premieres are lower and are up like TBBT amd has pissitive trands take goods ahd buzz.

  • Yessir

    @ Michael, I wholeheartedly agree.

    That’s why I prefer The Voice, they go straight to the singing. Unlike Idol and X-Factor where you have to wait for up to 15 minutes before you hear the 2nd candidate sing or worse the 1st performance we’ll see.

  • Oliver


    Arrow? Much ado about nothing, I do not understand all this enthusiasm, with all the publicity can not exceed TVD. If I was sent to another network would be canceled.

    Arrow is The CW’s biggest hit since TVD, and TVD is their biggest hit since the inception of the network. What’s not to “understand”?

  • BrieK

    Wow. Even worse than I predicted and I thought I was low (6.5). The Voice really killed AI because it makes AI auditions seem boring.

  • Mon

    i love the logic on this site. AI gets a 6.0 rating when hardly anything gets a 6.0 this season and its a failure but arrow did a 1.1 and SPN did a 0.9 and its a happy day. lol

    It’s just because Arrow and Supernatural held up really well against American Idol and not that we are belittling its 6.0. Why would anyone think 1.1 is better than 6.0 anyway?

  • Yessir

    I just checked again and it took Idol about an half hour including commercial breaks before we even got to see the 2nd candidate perform.

  • Ultima

    Fox will probably cancel X-Factor after next year.

    Part of the problem for FOX is that creates such an unbalanced schedule. You have to find three hours of programming you only need for the fall. It wasn’t a big deal during the earlier seasons because Idol was only on for 90 minutes a week, but now it’s a huge scheduling headache.

  • slow start

    X Factor > American Idol

    Idol is so boring compared to X Factor, people just watch it because it says Idol. It’s not better than The Voice either.

    Nashville should’ve done way better than that, CF repeated well, F Revolution that’s NBC’s #1 new show.

  • Burr

    I don’t watch either, but its amusing to to see people compare a 12 year old american idol to the 2 year old voice… I highly doubt the voice will be around in 10 years. Plus the ratings for american idol way back when were just, to quote others, “beastly”.

  • Mi

    “2. Supernatural was a few thousand viewers from hitting 1.0 in the demo. Which would have been a tenth of a point less than Arrow.”
    And how do you know how far Arrow was from a 1.2 demo?.. You can’t tell anything about how close 2 shows were from round numbers.

  • bigbrotherfan

    You people really need to know what you are saying!

    A 6.0 for a 12-year-old show is pretty damn good, I must say! Holy macro..YOU CAN’T BE FOR REAL!? I hope you aren’t the same people who jump up and down when CSI breaks a 2.5 on Wednesday nights, too!

  • Brian J


    You might be right. Of course, even if it gets 3.0, it’s still worth it to keep it on the air.

    The thing is, Fox will keep it on the air until it becomes completely unprofitable, which might be a few more seasons down the road. That, or if it gets another show to replace it.

    The show has become…kind of tired, no? It might be worth it to take a few seasons off–at least a year, if not two or three. People might get a chance to miss the show then.

    ABC is in a similar position with “Dancing.”

  • Mon

    How do you quote like that? Looks much better than italics.

  • gary

    Great for Nashville!!! fantastic episode last night

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