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Ratings Chart Attack! is the TV industry’s destination for a daily dose of prime-time ratings. Delivering the daily scoop on which shows are scoring. TVWeek’s Sergio Ibarra calls the winners and losers, and what it means to broadcast network programmers. From day-in, day-out ratings to long-view trends and noteworthy performances, Ratings Chart Attack! delivers.

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‘Housewives,’ ‘Brothers’ Return to Lower Numbers

September 29, 2008 12:19 PM

HousewivesFootball dominated the ratings Sunday night, while ABC’s “Desperate Housewives” and “Brothers and Sisters” led the night in non-sports-related programming with their lowest-rated premieres ever.

NBC’s telecast of the Eagles-Bears game scored a preliminary 6.3 rating/15 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to Nielsen Media Research data.

Compared to last week’s faceoff between the Green Bay Packers and the Dallas Cowboys, Sunday’s matchup slipped 22%. Due to the nature of live television, this data should be considered approximate and subject to change.

NBC nabbed first place for Sunday night with a 5.2/13.

The cap of ABC’s “Stay at Home Week” arrived Sunday with the season debuts of “Desperate Housewives” (7.0/16), “Brothers and Sisters” (4.7/12) and two back-to-back episodes of “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (2.2/7, 3.7/9). All shows declined compared with their premieres last year.

“Housewives” slid 7%, while “Brothers” dropped 6%, marking the lowest start for both shows. “Makeover” tumbled further, landing 24% and 23% down from last year’s premiere.

ABC ended the night in third place with a 4.4/11.

Animation returned to the Fox schedule with season premieres of “The Simpsons” (4.4/12), “King of the Hill” (3.3/8), “Family Guy” (4.5/10) and “American Dad” (3.2/7). With the exception of “Dad,” the animation block declined year-to-year, with “Guy” taking the biggest tumble with a 20% downturn. “Dad” increased one-tenth of a ratings point from last year. Fox finished second for the night with a 4.6/12.

CBS’ “The Amazing Race” hit a bump in the first episode of its 13th iteration, declining 28% from last year’s starter with a 3.1/8. However, “Race” debuted last year behind a big Colts/Patriots game in 2007, partially explaining the differential.

Both “Cold Case” (2.7/6) and “The Unit” (2.6/6) slipped slightly from last year’s premieres, while “60 Minutes” (2.1/6) ticked down one-tenth of a percentage point from last year. CBS took fourth with a 2.6/7.

The CW ended the night in fifth with a 0.6/2, airing mainly repeats.

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