via press release:

ABC Leads Monday Night Among Adults 18-49, Registering its

Strongest Numbers in Total Viewers and Young Adults Since November

Hitting Season Highs, “The Bachelor” Surges Week to Week by 11% in Total Viewers and by 14% in Adults 18-49 to Rank No. 1 in its Time Period in both Measures

ABC’s “Castle” Defeats NBC’s “Harry’s Law” by a Best-Ever 53% in Adults 18-49, Posting its Highest-Rated Young Adult Telecast in Over 3 Months

Monday Night (8:00-11:00 p.m.)

ABC took first place on Monday evening in Adults 18-49. In addition, the Net finished No. 1 on Monday for the 5th week in a row across all key Women demographics (W18-34/W18-49/W25-54).

  • ABC produced its biggest Monday in 3 months among Total Viewers (9.9 million) and Adults 18-49 (3.1/8) – since 11/22/10.  The Net hit a 4-month Monday high with Adults 18-34 (2.6/8) – since 10/25/10.

“The Bachelor” (8:00-10:00 p.m.)

Gaining audience throughout its broadcast and hitting a season high, ABC’s “The Bachelor” won its time slot among Adults 18-49 (3.3/9), beating out CBS’ comedy block (3.1/8) and Fox’s drama block (2.8/7 – “House”/”The Chicago Code”).   “The Bachelor” continued to win its 2-hour time period among Adults 18-34 (4th consecutive week) and registered as Monday’s No. 1 TV series overall with key Women (W18-34/W18-49) for the 8th week running.

  • Surging week to week in Total Viewers (+11% -10.3 million vs. 9.3 million) and Adults 18-49 (+14% – 3.3/9 vs. 2.9/8), “The Bachelor” posted season-high results on both Nielsen measures.

“Castle” (10:00-11:00 p.m.)

During the 10 o’clock hour against original drama competition on CBS (“Hawaii Five-0”) and NBC (“Harry’s Law”), ABC’s “Castle” (2.6/7) ran in a virtual tie for No. 1 with “Hawaii Five-0” (2.7/7) among Adults 18-49 (pacing within 1-tenth of a rating point).   The ABC drama beat out its competitors with Adults 18-34 (1.8/6) and won the hour with Women 18-34 (2.4/7) for its 5th straight telecast.  In addition, ABC’s “Castle” continued to draw more overall viewers (9.0 million vs. 8.7 million) than “Harry’s Law” and defeated the NBC drama by a best-ever margin of 53% in Adults 18-49 (2.6/7 vs. 1.7/5).

  • Jumping 18% over the prior week, ABC’s “Castle” posted its highest-rated telecast in Adults 18-49 since the beginning of November – since 11/1/10.

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 39% currently, from 35% at the same point in 2010.

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: The Nielsen Company (Fast Affiliate, Live + Same Day Ratings), 2/21/11.

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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