The 43rd annual CMA Awards dominated the night for ABC leading it to victory in all the major advertising demographics averaging a 5.2/14 (rating/share) with adults 18-49 and 16.85 million viewers.  It was the most-watched CMA Awards since 2005, and the biggest audience for an ABC Wednesday (excluding sports) since 9/21/05.  It was also ABC’s best Wednesday night with adults 18-49 (excluding sports) since 11/17/07.

Taylor Swift collected multiple awards, including “entertainer of the year” and displayed a good sense of humor about her experiences earlier this year at the MTV VMA Awards.

“I want to thank every single person here tonight for not running up on stage during this speech,” Swift said as she accepted the award for best female vocalist.

Glee returned from its baseball-induced hiatus as strong as ever (whether Julia is watching or not) to a 3.3 adults 18-49 rating.  Glee tied for second for the hour with Criminal Minds with adults 18-49.

The CMA Awards hit So You Think You Can Dance harder than Glee.  SYTYCD dropped to a 2.1 rating with adults 18-49, down from a 2.6 in its last Wednesday performance (10/21).

Is Gary Unmarried showing signs of life or did people who wanted a sitcom but not the CMA Awards tune in? It turned in a 2.5/6 rating/share with adults 18-49 at 8:30 – the show’s best performance with adults 18-49 since 11/19/08.  At 10pm on CBS, CSI: NY with the second part of the CSI trilogy turned in its best performance since the season premiere with a 3.7/10 rating/share with adults 18-49.

Over on NBC, Law & Order: SVU matched its season best with adults 18-49 with a 2.8 adults 18-49 rating and the second largest overall viewers of the season (8.1 million).

In Late-Night Local People Meters Wednesday night:

  • Conan O’Brien (1.0/4 in 18-49 in local people meters) tied CBS’s LATE SHOW (1.0/4) in Nielsen’s 24 local markets with People Meters.
  • At 12:35 a.m., Jimmy Fallon (0.5/3 in 18-49 in local people meters) trailed CBS’s LATE LATE SHOW (0.6/4).

Full Details:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Share Viewers (Millons)
8:00 ABC 43rd Annual CMA Awards 5.0/14 16.96
FOX So You Think You Can Dance 2.1/6 5.55
CBS New Adventures of Old Christine 2.2/6 7.57
NBC Mercy 1.8/5 6.76
CW America’s Next Top Model 1.5/4 3.19
8:30 CBS Gary Unmarried 2.5/6 7.70
9:00 ABC 43rd Annual CMA Awards 5.5/14 17.74
CBS Criminal Minds 3.3/8 12.26
FOX Glee 3.3/8 7.35
NBC Law & Order: SVU 2.8/7 8.81
CW Vampire Diaries (R) 0.5/1 1.22
10:00 ABC 43rd Annual CMA Awards 5.0/13 15.85
CBS CSI: NY 3.7/10 13.93
NBC The Jay Leno Show 1.4/4 4.60


Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2009 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

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


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.

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