TV Ratings Thursday: 'American Idol' Hits Series Low, 'Grey's Anatomy' & 'Scandal' Dip, + 'Beauty and the Beast' Flat

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March 29th, 2013


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 2.3/7 2.3/7 2.0/6 1.4/4 0.9/3 0.8/2
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 1.8/7 1.9/7 1.6/6 1.2/4 0.8/3 0.6/2
Total Viewers (million) 7.053 6.917 7.530 3.524 1.990 2.621

Due to the nature of live  programming the ratings for CBS (NCAA Basketball tournament) are approximate and subject to more than the typical adjustments in the final numbers. See below for more information on these Fast Affiliate Ratings.

CBS and ABC tied for number 1 in adults 18-49 while FOX won with Total Viewers.

NOTE: Versus last week, A18-49 usage was down -7% from 8-10p and -8% in the 8-9pm hour  last night.

On FOX,  American Idol scored a 2.7, down two tenths from last week's 2.9 adults 18-49 rating. This is the lowest Adults 18-49 rating ever for any Idol, any night. A one-hour Raising Hope earned a 1.3 from 9-10PM. Two half hour episodes earned a 1.4 at 9PM and a 1.2 at 9:30PM. Both are down from its last original's 1.5, which aired a month ago.

On ABC, Wife Swap garnered a 1.4, down three tenths from last week's 1.7 adults 18-49 rating.  Grey's Anatomy earned a 2.8, down two tenths from last week's 3.0 adults 18-49 rating. Scandal earned a 2.6, down a single tenth from last week's 2.7 adults 18-49 rating.

On CBS, the NCAA Tournament earned a preliminary 2.3  adults 18-49 rating from 8-11PM, but as noted are likely to be adjusted in the final ratings, and only cover the primetime portion of the telecasts.

On NBC, two episodes of 1600 Penn scored a series lows 0.7 at both 8:30 and 9:30, both down from last week's 0.9 adults 18-49 rating.

On The CW, The Vampire Diaries earned a 1.2, down a single tenth from last week's 1.3 adults 18-49 rating.  Beauty and the Beast was even with last week's 0.6 adults 18-49 rating.


Overnight ratings for Thursday, March 28, 2013:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM FOX American Idol 2.7 9 11.03
CBS 2013 NCAA Basketball Tournament -Live 2.3 7 6.92
ABC Wife Swap 1.4 5 4.27
CW The Vampire Diaries 1.2 4 2.43
NBC Community -R 0.7 3 2.35
8:30PM NBC 1600 Penn 0.7 2 1.89
9:00PM ABC Grey's Anatomy 2.8 8 8.33
FOX Raising Hope 1.4 4 4.57
NBC The Office -R 0.7 2 1.66
CW Beauty and the Beast 0.6 2 1.55
9:30 PM FOX


Raising Hope

1600 Penn







10:00 PM ABC Scandal 2.6 7 8.05
NBC Law & Order: SVU -R 1.0 3 3.96

via press note:

Note coming soon

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.


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.

  • CookyMonzta

    Posted March 29, 2013 at 11:44 AM
    “@ Networkman
    “Like I said in my previous post… It is not judges that make the show. It is the contestants…”

    That’s why Idol’s decline has turned into an avalanche. They are more interested in the judges, the products they’re advertising, and the desperate need to create drama, than they are in the contenders.

    @Mike K: They got a decent female contingent, but obviously no one is satisfied, and many are accusing the top brass (with good reason, I’m afraid) of deliberately throwing the guys under the bus during the auditions and qualifying rounds to make it easier for a girl to win.

  • Alex

    Lets post some actual facts rather than assertions.

    Revenge rating the week before Walking Dead return (Fall) – 2.6
    Revenge rating the week of Walking Dead return (Fall) – 2.6

    Revenge rating before Downton Abbey return – 2.4
    Revenge rating week of Downton Abbey return – 2.4
    There was a hiatus of a few weeks between these Revenge episodes

    Revenge rating before The Bible debuts – 1.8
    Revenge rating after The Bible debuts – 2.0
    Again hiatus between these episodes

    Yes clearly the big show competition is killing Revenge. The argument that its being scheduling against one-off events like the Golden Globes, Grammy Awards and NFL play-offs that’s hurt Revenge holds more water. There are obvious dents made by those events. For example:

    Week before Golden Globes – 2.4
    Week of Golden Globes – 2.0

    But equally I’m fairly sure most people have said that airing originals against these events was stupid of ABC and certainly not something they needed to do. I think that Revenge can’t rebound from these events perhaps says more about the show than the nature of the competition though. That is just my opinion though.

  • k:Alex

    You’re right, my telephone isn’t the smartest one.

  • Alex

    As Much as I LOVE Scandal, if ABC moved this show to any other time slot, it would experience a HUGE decline. As others have stated, ABC should not even dare think about moving this show.

    And you’re basing this on what exactly? Your ‘gut feeling’?

  • perfected

    Whitney actually did outdo Community in repeat mode.

    BatB looking pretty good right now.

  • perfected

    How soon before X Factor and Idol merge together?

  • heba

    @Alex. Stop trying so hard to post excuses because ur just delusional get ur facts straight before coming on here everyone know that the 21 slot on Sundays is the most competitive slot

  • Nathan


    My gut is never wrong, Alex. ;)

  • Alex

    Stop trying so hard to post excuses because ur just delusional get ur facts straight before coming on here everyone know that the 21 slot on Sundays is the most competitive slot

    I think you’ll find its the second most competitive slot…

  • hey

    I don’t like how Fox is changing the panel for X factor and Idol every year. Im glad people are starting to tune out!

  • martin

    are these the final numbers? thanks

  • carl


  • solelle

    The last 2 episodes of vampire diaries have really been boring as crap. Bad Elana is just the same character as Cathrine. We needed two Cathrines why? Really writers you can’t do better. Ian Sommerholder could not even save the episode. Which is sad because he is their Katie holmes. ( Back in te Dawsons Creek days there was an article/interview where the guy in charge at the time sad if a scene was going bad or not coming off as planned they would just put Katie in it even if she was just sitting there and it fixed the scene.) And now I have dated myself. Ya I am that old.

  • CrimTV

    I’ve never watched American Idol before, but judging by people’s comments online, Nicki Minaj has something to do with people not watching anymore with many stating they would watch if she wasn’t on it. I’m not making “fan excuse bingo” because I’ve never watched, nor am I fan of American Idol and i’m not a Nicki or AI hater this is just my insight

  • Gem is truly outragious

    @crimtv I think you hit the nail on nickis head. ive seen that around to,and i have not watched since the first time i saw her on it. something about her annoys me. guess im not the only one.

  • forg

    The problem with American Idol this season is the finalists are not that exciting/interesting and they have been very blatant in pushing for a girl to win this time. I mean I’m also sick of the WGWG winners the past years but there’s something off when it’s so obvious that they want a “new type” to win this year. And I think having X Factor on in the fall hurts it as well. When FOX decided to have both singing competitions in one year it was bound to happen that one if not both will eventually go down.

    Glee has been on after AI to buy it another couple of seasons because I think if it stayed on Tue 8 pm it would be consistently below 2.0 now. The post AI slot is not as lucrative as it used to be anymore

  • Lord Seth

    Reruns of Community beat 1600 Penn? Man.

    And American Idol continues its descent. It’s dropped from being the Ratings Death Star to being just a Ratings Star Destroyer.

  • Richard Steven Hack

    TVD was great. Finally got to see Elena vs Katherine action with bonus Rebecca. Also nice to see Elijah back. Great scenes between Caroline and Klaus. Still don’t understand how Silas works – apparently he just creates whole bodies out of nothing, which makes no sense. Apparently they’re trying to reverse roles: Katherine tries to be better while Elena turns into Katherine, killing random civilians. Wonder how that will play with the fans.

    BATB final scene was so stupid it was beyond belief. The guy jumps off a four or five story building heedless of being seen – and gets seen. This is why the show sucks. The entire episode was proof why the premise doesn’t work, not to mention that everyone acted liked a complete idiot. J.T. had the best line when he said, “We finally got everyone to believe he’s dead, then you two screw it up.” Sums up the show in one line. :-)

    However, if the show can hold onto .6 – and I’m waiting for the finals – for the rest of the season, the CW just might be dumb enough to renew it. This would be a big mistake, but they might make it.

  • Laura

    Well, this concerns me with New Girl being after American Idol next week! It consistently gets 2.3 in the key demo.

    I don’t think switching days is a good idea for viewers. Fans might get confused. I think that’s what happened with Raising Hope.

  • theCroup

    Why do people keep talking about X-factor and Idol merging? They share some production/distribution but there was some major bad blood when Cowell left Idol. Fox can’t just order them to merge. Each may retool on its own to become even more like the other (or The Voice), but the shows themselves won’t merge. Fox will eventually just cancel one (probably X-factor for a lot of reasons).

    Merging won’t help much anyway as the formats for both are similar and the judge/judge chemistry problem exists on both shows.

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