American Idol drew a 6.4 adults 18-49 rating last night. That’s down from 13.5% from  last week’s two-hour premiere and down a fairly massive 30% from the equivalent Wednesday telecast a year ago (a two-hour version) that averaged a 9.2 adults 18-49 rating and 25.37 million viewers. Fox still easily won Wednesday night though with both total viewers and adults 18-49.

The special early preview of Touch drew a 3.9 adults 18-49 rating and 11.9 million viewers. The 3.9 is greater than the 3.2 for the two-hour Terra Nova premiere and the two-hour Alcatraz premiere’s 3.3, though in fairness neither of those had the benefit of the American Idol lead-in. The official global series premiere of Touch is on March 19. U.S. residents who missed the pilot last night can watch it here.  For the retenionistas among you, Touch‘s 61% retention out of Idol was the best retention for a drama premiere after Idol ever.  That’s better than the 45% retention for the special Glee preview in the spring of 2009.  Other drama debuts after American Idol:

  • HUMAN TARGET series premiere (1/20/10): 3.4/9 – 34% retention of IDOL lead-in
  • LIE TO ME series premiere (1/21/09):  4.9/12 – 50% retention of IDOL lead-in
  • FRINGE – first post-IDOL airing (1/20/09): 4.6/11 — 51% retention of IDOL lead-in

Update: in time zone adjusted fast nationals, ‘Touch’ held the 3.9 rating (so there will be no adjustments in the final numbers) and bumped up to 12 million total viewers.

Marg Helgenberger exited CSI on a high note. In her final episode as CSI Catherine Willows CSI drew a 3.3 adults 18-49 rating and 14.03 million viewers, both season highs. Earlier in the night Criminal Minds was up 13% from last week to a 3.6 adults 18-49 rating.

Bad night for NBC’s 8pm comedy block. It was beaten by ABC’s repeats with Whitney down 13% to a series low 1.4 adults 18-49 rating and Are You There, Chelsea? down 18% to a 1.4 adults 18-49 rating also a season/series low.

CW’s One Tree Hill was steady vs. last week with a 0.7 adults 18-49 rating.

Late-night results are below the primetime data.

Overnight ratings for Wednesday, January 25, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (Millions)
8:00 FOX American Idol 6.4/18 19.51
CBS Criminal Minds (R) 1.7/5 7.91
ABC The Middle (R) 1.5/4 5.26
NBC Whitney 1.4/4 4.50
CW One Tree Hill 0.7/2 1.47
8:30 ABC Suburgatory (R) 1.4/4 4.21
NBC Are You There, Chelsea? 1.4/4 3.90
9:00 FOX Touch (Special Preview) 3.9/10 11.87
CBS Criminal Minds 3.6/9 13.70
ABC Modern Family (R) 2.5/6 6.49
NBC Law & Order: SVU (R) 1.2/3 3.75
CW Remodeled (R) 0.3/1 0.66
9:30 ABC Happy Endings (R) 1.7/4 4.02
10:00 CBS CSI 3.3/9 14.03
NBC Law & Order: SVU (R) 1.4/4 4.01
ABC Revenge (R) 0.9/2 3.12

via NBC press note:

In Late-Night Metered Markets Wednesday night:

  • In Nielsen’s 56 metered markets, household results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 2.6/7 with an encore telecast; CBS’s “Late Show with David Letterman,” 2.5/6 with an encore; and ABC’s combo of “Nightline,” 3.0/7; and “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” 1.4/4.
  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 0.9/4 with an encore; “Late Show,” 0.7/3 with an encore; “Nightline,” 0.8/3; and “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” 0.4/2
  • At 12:35 a.m., “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” (1.4/5 in metered-market households with an encore) beat CBS’s “Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” (1.2/4 with an encore).  In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, “Late Night” (0.6/4 in 18-49 with an encore) topped “Late Late Show” (0.4/3 with an encore).
  • At 1:35 a.m., “Last Call with Carson Daly” averaged a 0.9/4 with an encore in metered-market households and a 0.4/3 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters

NOTE: All ratings are “live plus same day” from Nielsen Media Research unless otherwise indicated.

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2012 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. 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.

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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