St. Patrick’s Day night offered very little in the way of new programming with CBS running repeats other than a new Gary Unmarried and ABC running all repeats except for Ugly Betty and what seems likely to be the series finale of Scrubs which was down 20% from last week.  It doesn’t really matter since it has already been canceled, but Ugly Betty was down even more, 29% to its lowest ratings ever for an original episode not aired on a Friday.

Fox naturally won the night with American Idol, which was up 5% versus last week with adults 18-49.  Versus last year American Idol continues to hold up well, down only 6% with adults 18-49.  It’s down only 5% with adults 18-34 and total viewers, and down 3% with teens.

Though it was no great shakes for Mercy at 8pm, up against repeats and Ugly Betty at 10pm, Law & Order: SVU led the hour and NBC finished in second place for the night.

At 8pm a new episode of Human Target was down a tenth with adults 18-49 from last week to a 2.3 rating.  Considering how the 8pm hour fared for many shows this week, that’s not too bad.  Especially considering FOX chief Kevin Reilly was expecting Daylight Saving Time to take a toll on Human Target.

Over on the CW America’s Next Top Model was up a tick with women 18-34 to a 2.8 rating. Though it won’t matter, High Society was up a couple of tenths with women 18-34 to a 1.1 rating.


Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (Millions)
8:00 FOX Human Target 2.3/8 7.95
CBS New Adventures of Old Christine (R) 1.4/5 5.50
CW America’s Next Top Model 1.6/6 3.82
NBC Mercy 1.4/5 5.58
ABC Scrubs 1.2/4 3.46
8:30 CBS Gary Unmarried 1.8/6 5.89
ABC The Middle  (R) 1.4/5 4.21
9:00 FOX American Idol 6.6/19 20.05
CBS Criminal Minds (R) 1.8/5 7.65
ABC Modern Family  (R) 1.8/5 4.90
CW America’s Next Top Model 1.7/5 3.65
NBC Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (R)
9:30 ABC Cougar Town (R) 1.3/4 3.56
CW High Society 0.5/2 1.20
10:00 NBC Law & Order: Special Victims Unit 2.8/8 9.52
CBS CSI: NY (R) 1.6/5 7.47
ABC Ugly Betty 1.0/3 3.33

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2010 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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