via release:

ABC’s “The Middle” Wins at 8:30pm for its 3rd Straight Original Telecast

“Modern Family” is Wednesday’s No. 1 Scripted TV Show

For its 10th Consecutive Original Broadcast in Adults 18-49

“Cougar Town” is the No. 1 Scripted Show at 9:30pm

Among Adults 18-34 for its 5th Straight First-Run Airing

“The Middle” (8:30-9:00 p.m.)

Jumping over its lead-in by 1.9 million viewers and by 69% with young adults, ABC’s self-starter “The Middle” won its half-hour for its 3rd straight original telecast in both Total Viewers (6.8 million) and Adults 18-49 (2.2/7).

  • Among Adults 18-49, the ABC freshman comedy has finished as the No. 1 scripted show in its half-hour on 5 of its last 6 first-run broadcasts.

“Modern Family” (9:00-9:30 p.m.)

Opposite “Idol” at 9:00 p.m., ABC’s “Modern Family” built sharply on its lead-in (+2.5 million viewers/+73% in AD18-49) to stand as the No. 1 scripted show in its time slot with Adults 18-49 (3.8/11), defeating originals of CBS’ “Criminal Minds” by 15% (3.3/9) and NBC’s “Mercy” by 245% (1.1/3).  In addition, for its 4th straight original telecast, the ABC rookie ran in a virtual tie with “Idol” as the No. 1 program in the half-hour with Men 18-34 (3.1/11 vs. 3.2/11).

  • “Modern Family” registered as Wednesday’s No. 1 scripted TV show for its 10th consecutive first-run broadcast in young adults.

“Cougar Town” (9:30-10:00 p.m.)

Opposite the second half-hour of a surging “Idol” and “Criminals Minds,” ABC freshman “Cougar Town” qualified as the No. 1 scripted program at 9:30pm in Adults 18-34 (2.1/7) and Women 18-34 (2.4/7-tie).

  • In Adults 18-34, “Cougar Town” qualified as the highest-rated scripted show against its broadcast rivals in the half-hour for 5 straight original airings.

A note about increasing DVR penetration and year-to-year rating comparisons: Year-to-year rating comparisons based on the Live + Same Day data stream are distorted by the level of DVR penetration in the Nielsen sample, which has jumped up to 36% currently, from 31% at the same point in 2009. More viewers are watching shows on their own timetables, which may not be reflected in the overnight next day numbers. The only truly valid year-to-year comparison would be one based on the Live + 7 Day metric, once those stats are released by Nielsen.

Source: Nielsen Media Research (Fast Affiliate, Live + Same Day Ratings), 5/5/10.

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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