Fueled by American Idol, FOX had a convincing win with adults 18-49 and 18-34. FOX also edged out CBS  to have the most overall viewers for the night as well.

CBS came in second for the night with both total viewers and adults 18-49 and tied for second with adults 18-34.  The only hour it actually one was 10pm with The Good Wife with the NCIS duo trailing Idol at 8pm and Lost at 9pm. Though given the competition, NCIS keeps chugging along and it looks like the best 18-49 number for NCIS: LA since its premiere.

American Idol saw a 12 percent boost as it moved to Hollywood, and had the most viewers (27.7 million) it has had since the January premiere.  How much of that is Hollywood  Week and how much of that was Ellen?  We can only guess, but I’d guess mostly Hollywood Week. Still versus the first night of Hollywood Week last year (Feb 3, 2009) Idol was  up +1% in Adults 18-49, +4% in Total Viewers and +8% among Teens.

Past Life’s best days are already behind it and last night was its premiere.  It averaged a 3.1 rating with adults 18-49 and 9 million viewers.

Lost dropped 11 percent from the premiere to a 4.9 rating with adults 18-49, still pretty decent retention from the premiere for a show in its sixth (and final) season. The Forgotten (remember The Forgotten) had its best outing in a while in the post-lost slot with a 2.0 adults 18-49 rating.  Though a lot of that was lead-in related as The Forgotten had a 2.3 in its first half hour and dropped to a 1.7 adults 18-49 rating in its last 30 minutes.

The final telecast of  The Jay Leno Show at 10pm averaged a 1.8 rating with adults 18-49 and 5.86 million viewers.

Late night numbers:

  • Conan O’Brien (0.9/4 in 18-49 in local people meters with an encore telecast) trailed CBS’s first-run LATE SHOW (1.3/5) in Nielsen’s 25 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 (0.7/4).


Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (Millons)
8:00 FOX American Idol 10.1/26 27.74
CBS NCIS 4.1/11 19.68
NBC Biggest Loser: Couples 3.0/8 7.86
ABC Lost (R) 1.7/4 4.86
CW 90210 (R) 0.4/1 0.91
9:00 ABC Lost 4.9/12 11.02
CBS NCIS: Los Angeles 4.0/10 17.82
NBC Biggest Loser: Couples 4.0/10 10.21
FOX Past Life 3.1/8 9.07
CW Melrose Place (R) 0.3/1 0.73
10:00 CBS The Good Wife 3.1/9 14.69
ABC The Forgotten 2.0/6 5.93
NBC The Jay Leno Show (Series Finale) 1.8/5 5.86

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 ViewingProgram 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.

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

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