Broadcast primetime live + same-day ratings for Thursday, Dec. 17, 2015.

Note: CBS affiliates in St. Louis and Tampa aired the “Thursday Night Football” telecast, so numbers for the network will be subject to greater adjustments than usual.

The numbers for Thursday:

Time Show Adults 18-49 Rating/Share Viewers (000s)
8 p.m. The Big Bang Theory (CBS) 4.1/16 17.38
Disney Prep & Landing (ABC) – S 0.8/3 3.4
How Murray Saved Christmas (NBC) – S 0.5/2 2.17
American Country Countdown’s Top 10 Stories of 2015 (FOX) – S 0.5/2 2.69
iHeartRadio Jingle Ball (The CW) (8-9:30 p.m.) – S 0.4/2 1.2
8:30 p.m. Life in Pieces (CBS) 2.5/8 11.17
Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice (ABC) – S 0.9/3 3.23
9 p.m. Mom (CBS) 2.0/7 9.55
Modern Family (ABC) – R 0.9/3 3.22
Kelly Clarkson’s Cautionary Christmas Tale (NBC) – S 0.6/2 3.48
World’s Funniest (FOX) 0.5/2 1.78
9:30 p.m. 2 Broke Girls (CBS) 1.7/6 7.34
Barbara Walters’ 10 Most Fascinating People of 2015 (ABC) (9:30-11 p.m.) -S 1.0/3 6.21
Whose Line Is It Anyway? (The CW) – R 0.3/1 0.87
10 p.m. Elementary (CBS) 1.2/4 6.36
Running Wild with Bear Grylls (NBC) – S 0.9/3 3.52


CBS was the only network that aired its full, regular lineup Thursday and it cruised to a ratings win. Just how big its numbers end up being, however, remains to be seen.

For the second week in a row, the network had two NFL pre-emptions in medium-sized markets (St. Louis and Tampa) that will result in some adjustments in the final ratings. For now, “The Big Bang Theory” (4.1) and “Life in Pieces” (2.5) are running 0.1 ahead of their fast national numbers last week, while “Mom” (2.0) is steady and “2 Broke Girls” (1.7) and “Elementary” (1.2) are off a bit. With adjustments, everything will likely come down by 0.2 to 0.4 and end up in line with their season averages.

The annual “10 Most Fascinating People” special on ABC didn’t fascinate many people — its 1.0 18-49 rating is down from 1.4 last year. A special “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” featuring President Obama drew a 0.9 for NBC.

Network averages:

Adults 18-49 rating/share 2.1/7 0.9/3 0.7/2 0.5/2 0.4/1
Total Viewers (000s) 9.69 4.74 3.05 2.23  1.12


Late-night metered market results (adults 18-49, households):

11:35 p.m.

“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”: 1.1/5, 2.8/7

“Late Show with Stephen Colbert”: 0.5/3, 2.1/5

“Jimmy Kimmel Live”: 0.5/3, 2.0/5

12:35 a.m.

“Late Night with Seth Meyers”: 0.6/4, 1.4/5

“Nightline”: 0.3/2, 1.3/4

“Late Late Show with James Corden”: 0.3/2, 1.1/4

: 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.
Fast Affiliate Ratings: These first national ratings are available at approximately 11 a.m. ET the day after telecast. 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. 
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. 
Time Shifted Viewing:
 Program ratings for national sources are produced in three streams of data – Live, Live +Same-Day and Live +7 Day. Time-shifted figures account for incremental viewing that takes place with DVRs. Live+SD includes viewing during the same broadcast day as the original telecast, with a cut-off of 3 a.m. local time when meters transmit daily viewing to Nielsen for processing. Live +7 ratings include  viewing that takes place during the 7 days following a telecast.

Source: The Nielsen Company.

Posted by:Rick Porter

Rick Porter has been covering TV since the days when networks sent screeners on VHS, one of which was a teaser for the first season of "American Idol." He's left-handed, makes a very solid grilled cheese and has been editor of TV by the Numbers since October 2015. He lives in Austin.

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