FOX won the ratings wasteland that is Saturday night, though the 10pm hour of CBS’s 48 Hours Mystery was easily the most-watched show on the broadcast networks last night, and my guess is that game 3 of the Magic/Celtics NBA playoff series on ESPN easily beat everything on the broadcast nets.

On the east coast FOX ran the national weekly MLB game in primetime (from 7p-10p) so those numbers are subject to significant revision in the final numbers due to the way live events are measured.

As of this writing Marc Berman reported identical numbers for the Law & Order: SVU and Castle repeats at 10pm.  The numbers for Castle were almost certainly wrong so for now I’m leaving them blank in the table below.  Either way Castle will be back in the fall…

Nielsen overnight ratings for Saturday, May 22, 2010:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating Viewers (Millions) 8:00 FOX MLB Game of the Week 1.1/4 4.31 ABC Lost (Pilot Episode) 8p-10p (R) 0.8/3 2.55 CBS CSI (R) 0.6/3 3.80 NBC Parenthood (R) 0.5/2 2.06 9:00 FOX MLB Game of the Week 1.3/5 4.77 CBS 48 Hours Mysery 1.0/4 5.04 NBC Law & Order (R) 0.8/3 4.03 10:00 CBS 48 Hours Mysery 1.5/5 6.38 NBC Law & Order: SVU (R) 1.1/4 4.56 ABC Castle (R)

You can see TV ratings from other recent Overnight ratings reports here.

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2010 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved. Source: Marc Berman/Mediaweek.


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 football 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 which are currently in approximately 24.4% of all U.S. TV households. 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 and Numbers 102.

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