CBS Finishes Season Number 1 in All Key Ratings Categories

Categories: Network TV Press Releases

Written By

May 21st, 2013


via press release:



#1 in Viewers for the 10th Time in 11 Years,Winning By the Largest Margin of Any Network in 24 Years


#1 in Adults 18-49 for the First Time in 21 Years, Even With Super Bowl Sunday Excluded


#1 in Adults 25-54 for the Seventh Time in the Last Nine Seasons


Top Seven Scripted Programs in Viewers


Nine of the Top 15 Scripted Series in Adults 18-49—More Than Any Other Network


Top Five Dramas; Four of the Top Five Comedies


NCIS” is the Season's #1 Program for the First Time


The Big Bang Theory” is #1 Comedy in Viewers, A18-49, A25-54 and A18-34


Elementary” is the #1 New Series and #1 New Drama


            CBS swept the 2012-2013 television season in all key ratings categories, placing first in viewers for the 10th time in 11 years, first in adults 18-49 for the first time in 21 years (1991-1992), and first in adults 25-54 for the seventh time in the last nine seasons, according to Nielsen most current ratings through the week ending May 19.


With two nights remaining, CBS is the only major network posting year-to-year growth in viewers (+1%) and will win the season by 4 million viewers, the largest margin by any network in 24 years (1988-1989).  CBS will win in adults 18-49 even with Super Bowl Sunday excluded from the season average.


In a sign of the network's broad reach and demographic strength across the schedule, CBS will finish the season with more programs ranked among the top 30 in viewers (16), adults 18-49 (12) and adults 25-54 (15) than any other network.


CBS has the top seven scripted series in viewers—NCIS, The Big Bang Theory, NCIS: LOS ANGELES, Person Of Interest, Two and a Half Men, Blue Bloods and Elementary.


The Network has the top five dramas—NCIS, NCIS: LOS ANGELES, Person Of Interest, Blue Bloods and Elementary


CBS has four of the five comedies—The Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men, 2 Broke Girls and MIKE & MOLLY.


Person Of Interest was the fastest-growing drama on a major broadcast network, up +12% from last season.


The Network also has nine of the top 15 scripted programs in adults 18-49, more than all of the other networks combined—The Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men, NCIS, 2 Broke Girls, How I Met Your Mother, Person Of Interest, NCIS: LOS ANGELES, Criminal Minds and MIKE & MOLLY.


CBS has the #1 scripted program in viewers on five nights—Tuesday (NCIS), Thursday (THE Big Bang Theory), Friday (Blue Bloods), Saturday (CRIMETIME SATURDAY) and Sunday (THE Mentalist).


Additional Primetime Highlights:


  • #1 program—NCIS


  • #1 drama—NCIS



  • #1 new series—Elementary. This marks the fourth time in the past five seasons that CBS had the #1 new series.



  • #1 scripted series in adults 18-49, adults 25-54 and adults 18-34—THE Big Bang Theory


  • More time period winners in viewers than all other networks combined (15)


  • More time period winners in adults 25-54 than all other networks combined (14)


  • Tied for most time period winners in adults 18-49 (7)


  • CBS is first on five nights in viewers (Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday), second on the other two (Monday and Wednesday). No other network wins more than one night.


Live +7 Day DVR Lift:


  • CBS is the #1 network in L+7 Day DVR lift, averaging gains of +1.53 million viewers, +0.6 rating points in adults 25-54 and +0.5 rating points in adults 18-49.


  • Four of the top 10, and 10 of the top 20 gainers in viewers (more than any network):


#3        THE Big Bang Theory (+ 3.3 million)       

#5        NCIS (+ 3.1 million)

#6        Elementary (+ 3.0 million)

#9        THE Mentalist (+ 2.8 million)    

#11      Person Of Interest (+ 2.8 million) 

#12      Blue Bloods (+ 2.7 million)

#14      Hawaii Five-0 (+ 2.5 million)

#17      NCIS: LOS ANGELES (+ 2.4 million)

#19      Criminal Minds (+ 2.4 million)

#20      CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION (+2.3 million)


Annual Franchise Specials Have Big Year:


  • THE 55TH ANNUAL GRAMMY AWARDS® delivered 28.37 million viewers, the second-largest audience since 1993, its second-highest adult 25-54 (11.2) and adults 18-49 (10.1) ratings since 2004, setting a new awards show social TV record with 18.7 million social media comments.


  • The ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC AWARDS posted its biggest audience in 15 years (15.51m), its best adult 18-49 rating since 2001 (4.3) and its best adult 25-54 rating since 2000 (5.4), topping the “CMA Awards” for the first time. The ACM was up +39% from last year in adults 18-49, +26% in adults 25-54 and broke social media records.


  • THE PEOPLE'S CHOICE AWARDS was up in viewers (9.72m), adults 25-54 (3.4/08) and adults 18-49 (2.7/07) compared to last year.



(Sept. 24, 2012-May 19, 2013)


CBS                11.85m

NBC                  6.96m

ABC                  7.85m

FOX                  7.06m


ADULTS 18-49

CBS                   2.9/8

NBC                   2.4/7

ABC                   2.2/6

FOX                   2.5/7


ADULTS 25-54

CBS                  3.8/9

NBC                  2.8/7

ABC                  2.8/7

FOX                  2.9/7


  • Fed master

    Congratulations to the great CBS Corporation. Next year the same :)

  • Jax T

    They have good shows. They transitioned very well from relying on the CSI franchise.

  • Jax T

    I still watch many more tv shows on cable (usa, tnt, fx, etc.)than network tv.

  • Judy912

    I noticed that CBS has the most watched scripted programs on all nights except for Monday and Wednesday nights. Can you tell me which networks and which programs were the most watched on Monday and Wednesday nights please?

  • Patrick Ausgewahlt

    Come on CBS, you aren’t ABC. You are the winner in 18-49 demo, so you don’t have to do press releases about total viewers. And really? Crimetime Saturday? You are bragging that your repeats are on Saturday are doing well. Come on CBS. You have actual things to brag about. No need to spin numbers. You have the top drama in demo as well as the top comedy.

  • Michael

    People rag on NBC, but they’re not doing too shabby!

  • Shaz

    Re Elementary as the #1 new series. Is that because the Superbowl episode ratings are included, otherwise Revolution or The Following would be #1 new series?

  • Carmen

    @ Michael
    People rag on NBC, but they’re not doing too shabby!

    I don’t know that people ‘rag’ on NBC per se. But they do point out that most of NBC’s ratings come from Football and The fall session of The Voice. Without those, NBC would be woefully in 4th place.

    Anytime anyone points that out, a legion of NBC fans take offense immediately start calling everyone “haters”

  • Abc123


    Did NCIS beat out Sunday Night Football for #1 in overall total viewers? Can’t seem to find those numbers anywhere

  • Michael


    Also, the spring edition of The Voice also contributes to NBC success. Being the #1 talent reality show this year, overtaking American Idol reign at #1 for 10 years isn’t something to take lightly. Obviously, more people watch TV LIVE during the fall versus spring.


    yes abc123 ncis won

  • Morgan Wick

    First place on Monday is probably either ABC or NBC (DWTS/Voice), Wednesday is probably Fox (Idol/XFactor), maybe ABC (Modern Family).

  • Judy912

    @Morgan Wick, true ABC’s DWTS and The Voice as well as Fox’s American Idol & The X-Factor did brillantly this season. I was actually interested in finding out which SCRIPTED TV series was first on Monday and Wednesday nights. Can you find out and tell me Sara Bibel?

  • dnazelrod

    TV Line stated that The Following was the #1 new series, not Elementary. ????

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