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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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Ratings Chart Attack!


December 2008 Archives

Ratings Chart for Tuesday, Dec. 30

December 31, 2008 11:54 AM

Prime Time Preliminary Tuesday Ratings

Tuesday night's telecast of the "Kennedy Center Honors" (1.8/5) on CBS rose 50% from its airing on Dec. 26 last year, helping CBS win the night in total viewers (11.5 million). However, NBC won the night among viewers 18-49 with a block of "Law & Order" and "Law & Order: SVU," giving the network a 44% ratings increase over last week. Repeats of "House" and "Fringe" gave Fox a third-place finish in the demographic. ABC started the night strongly with holiday-themed programming, but lost ratings and viewers with "According to Jim" and remained relatively flat for "Eli Stone." The CW rounded off the night in fifth.

 

8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

1.5 / 4

Happy New Year, Charlie Brown

2.0 / 6

6.5

Rudolph's Shiny New Year

1.7 / 5

5.1 mil

According to Jim

1.2 / 3

3.8 mil

Eli Stone

1.2 / 3

3.8 mil

CBS

2.1 / 6

NCIS

2.6 / 8

13.5 mil

Kennedy Center Honors

1.8 / 5

10.4 mil

FOX

1.8 / 5

House

2.0 / 6

6 mil

Fringe

1.6 / 5

5.1 mil

No Programming

NBC

2.3 / 6

Law & Order

1.5 / 5

5.5 mil

Law & Order: SVU

2.6 / 7

9.7 mil

Law & Order: SVU

2.6 / 7

8.8 mil

CW

0.4 / 1

90210

0.5 / 1

1.2 mil

Privileged

0.3 / 1

1 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 114.5 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

Ratings Chart for Monday, Dec. 29

December 30, 2008 10:43 AM

Prime Time Preliminary Monday Ratings

CBS' Monday night comedies and "CSI: Miami" gave the network a ratings win in adults 18-49 and total viewers, averaging a 3.0 rating/8 share and 9.8 million viewers for the night. CBS programming ranked first throughout the night, posting a 25% ratings increase from last week. Fox placed second (2.0/5, 6.6 million) with encores of "House" and "Bones." ABC (1.7/5, 4.9 million) edged out NBC (1.6/5, 6.1 million) in the ratings, but trailed the peacock's reality-themed programming. A new episode of "Momma's Boys" remained flat from its two-hour Monday-night debut last week. The CW also was flat from last week.

 

8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

1.7 / 5

Movie: Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

1.7 / 5

4.9 mil

CBS

3.0 / 8

The Big Bang Theory

2.6 / 8

7.9 mil

How I Met Your Mother

2.9 / 8

7.8 mil

Two and a Half Men

3.6 / 10

11.8 mil

Worst Week

2.9 / 8

8.8 mil

CSI: Miami

2.9 / 8

11.4 mil

FOX

2.0 / 5

House

2.2 / 6

6.7 mil

Bones

1.7 / 5

6.5 mil

No Programming

NBC

1.6 / 5

Greatest Holiday Moments

1.5 / 4

6.1 mil

Deal or No Deal

1.7 / 4

7.2 mil

Momma's Boys

1.7 / 5

5 mil

CW

0.4 / 1

Gossip Girl

0.5 / 1

1.3 mil

One Tree Hill

0.4 / 1

0.9 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 114.5 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

Ratings Chart for Sunday, Dec. 28

December 29, 2008 11:19 AM

Prime Time Preliminary Sunday Ratings

NBC's "Sunday Night Football's" featured matchup between the Denver Broncos and San Diego Chargers performed strongly enough to give the network a win Sunday even though ratings were down significantly from last week, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research numbers. "SNF" posted a 4.4/12 in the Fast National numbers, down 21% from last week's Fast Nationals for the game between the Carolina Panthers and the New York Giants, which did a 5.6/14 before rising to 6.8/18 in the final numbers. An NFL lead-in helped Fox and CBS come in second and third, respectively, though programming on those networks was edged out by football throughout the night. ABC's presentation of "The Sound of Music" took up its entire prime-time block, doing a 1.6/4 for a fourth-place finish. The CW finished the night fifth.

 

7

7:30 8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

1.6 / 4

Movie: The Sound of Music

1.6 / 4

6.3 mil

CBS

2.5 / 7

NFL Overrun

5.3 / 15

18.6 mil

60 Minutes

2.7 / 8

13.5 mil

Million Dollar Password

2.0 / 6

9.9 mil

Cold Case

2.0 / 5

9.1 mil

The Unit

1.4 / 4

6 mil

FOX

2.6 / 7

NFL Overrun

3.6 / 10

9.7 mil

The OT

2.6 / 8

6.7 mil

The Simpsons

2.4 / 7

5.5 mil

King of the Hill

1.9 / 5

4.4 mil

Family Guy

2.7 / 7

5.6 mil

American Dad

2.2 / 6

4.7 mil

No Programming

NBC

4.0 / 11

Football Night in America

2.3 / 7

7.1 mil

Football Night in America

3.1 / 9

8.6 mil

NFL Football: Broncos vs. Chargers

4.4 / 12

11.9 mil

CW

0.3 / 1

Jericho

0.3 / 1

0.9 mil

Movie: Revenge of the Pink Panther

0.3 / 1

1.4 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18-to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 114.5 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

Ratings Chart for Tuesday, Dec. 23

December 24, 2008 11:15 AM

Prime Time Preliminary Tuesday Ratings

Repeats of Fox's "House" and "Fringe" and CBS' "NCIS" and "The Mentalist" gave the networks a first-place tie Tuesday night. Both Fox shows were down four-tenths of a point from last week's performance, but it was CBS' "Home for the Holidays" special that brought down the network's average for the night, even though the special was up 38% from last year. A night of "Law & Order" and "Law & Order: SVU" repeats gave NBC third place, while seasonal fare on ABC gave the network fourth. The CW placed fifth with its night of repeats.

 

8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

1.5 / 5

Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas

2.3 / 7

6.5 mil

Rediscovered

1.3 / 4

4.6 mil

The List

0.9 / 3

2.9 mil

CBS

1.8 / 5

10th Annual A Home for the Holidays

1.1 / 4

6.5 mil

NCIS

2.1 / 6

10.6 mil

The Mentalist

2.1 / 6

10.8 mil

FOX

1.8 / 6

House

2.1 / 7

6.7 mil

Fringe

1.5 / 5

4.3 mil

No Programming

NBC

1.6 / 5

Law & Order

1.3 / 4

6.1 mil

Law & Order: SVU

1.6 / 5

6 mil

Law & Order: SVU

2.0 / 6

7 mil

CW

0.5 / 1

90210

0.4 / 1

1.2 mil

Privileged

0.5 / 1

1.2 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 114.5 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

Ratings Chart for Monday, Dec. 22

December 23, 2008 11:39 AM

Prime Time Preliminary Monday Ratings

CBS placed first for the night, despite a lineup of repeats. NBC's second airing of "Momma's Boys" dropped 32% from its debut last Tuesday, but gained viewers through its two-hour telecast. "Momma's'" 10 p.m. hour (1.9/5) was the network's highest rated in seven weeks, up 19% from last week's episode of "My Own Worst Enemy." Family-friendly programming on ABC gave the network second place. Fox took third, NBC placed fourth and The CW placed fifth.

 

8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

2.2 / 6

Shrek the Halls

2.0 / 6

7 mil

Movie: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

2.2 / 6

7 mil

CBS

2.4 / 7

The Big Bang Theory

2.4 / 7

7.4 mil

How I Met Your Mother

2.5 / 7

7.1 mil

Two and a Half Men

3.5 / 10

11.8 mil

Worst Week

2.0 / 5

6.9 mil

CSI: Miami

2.0 / 5

8.5 mil

FOX

2.0 / 6

House

2.1 / 6

6.1 mil

Prison Break

1.9 / 5

5 mil

No Programming

NBC

1.7 / 5

Today Looks Back

1.5 / 5

6.2 mil

Momma's Boys

1.7 / 5

5 mil

CW

0.4 / 1

Gossip Girl

0.5 / 2

1.3 mil

One Tree Hill

0.3 / 1

0.9 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 114.5 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

Ratings Chart for Sunday, Dec. 21

December 22, 2008 12:03 PM

Prime Time Preliminary Sunday Ratings

NBC's "Sunday Night Football" led Sunday night among all key demos, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research numbers. Sunday night's matchup between the Carolina Panthers and the New York Giants was down 35% from last week's game's final ratings, but ahead 30% over last year. An NFL lead-in helped Fox take second place for the night, followed by CBS in third, ABC in fourth and The CW in fifth.

 

7

7:30 8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

1.9 / 5

America's Funniest

Home Videos

2.1 / 6

7.5 mil

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition

2.0 / 5

6.8 mil

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition

2.1 / 5

6.5 mil

Desperate Housewives

1.6 / 4

4.9 mil

CBS

2.0 / 5

60 Minutes

2.2 / 6

13.1 mil

Million Dollar Password

1.7 / 5

9.5 mil

Cold Case

2.2 / 5

11.9 mil

The Unit

1.9 /5

8.2 mil

FOX

3.0 / 8

NFL Overrun

5.5 / 16

15.1 mil

The OT

3.2 / 9

7.9 mil

The Simpsons

2.8 / 8

6.5 mil

King of the Hill

2.1 / 5

5.2 mil

Family Guy

2.5 / 6

5.9 mil

American Dad

2.0 / 5

4.7 mil

No Programming

NBC

4.8 / 13

Football Night in America

2.0 / 6

15.1 mil

Football Night in America

2.7 / 8

7.9 mil

Football Night in America

4.5 / 12

6.5 mil

NFL Football: Panthers vs. Giants

5.8 / 15

16.6 mil

CW

0.4 / 1

Jericho

0.3 / 1

0.9 mil

Movie: Three Amigos

0.4 / 1

1.3 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18-to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 114.5 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

Ratings Chart for Thursday, Dec. 18

December 19, 2008 12:39 PM

Prime Time Preliminary Thursday Ratings

CBS won Thursday night as repeats dominated the schedule, but it was Fox's "Secret Millionaire" that claimed a victory among new programs. "Secret Millionaire" won the 8 p.m. hour, remaining flat from last week. It edged out CBS' special presentation of "Million Dollar Password" in the 18-49 demographic, but "Password" triumphed in viewers. Followed by ratings and viewer wins for "CSI" and "Eleventh Hour," CBS topped the night with a 2.2 rating/7 share. Fox finished second with a 1.9/6, beating repeats on ABC, NBC and The CW.

 

8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

1.5 / 4

Ugly Betty

1.3 / 4

4.6 mil

Grey's Anatomy

1.8 / 5

5.5 mil

Private Practice

1.5 / 4

4.4 mil

CBS

2.2 / 7

Million Dollar Password

1.5 / 5

8.3 mil

CSI

2.9 / 8

12.6 mil

Eleventh Hour

2.3 / 7

10.1 mil

FOX

1.9 / 6

Secret Millionaire

2.0 / 6

6.4 mil

Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?

1.7 / 5

6.9 mil

No Programming

NBC

1.8/ /5

My Name Is Earl

1.7 / 5

4.7 mil

Kath & Kim

1.6 / 5

3.8 mil

The Office

2.3 / 7

5 mil

30 Rock

2.0 / 5

4.7 mil

30 Rock

1.7 / 5

4.3 mil

The Office

1.6 / 5

3.8 mil

CW

0.8 / 2

Smallville

0.8 / 2

2.1 mil

Supernatural

0.8 / 2

2.1 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 114.5 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

CBS Rules Wednesday Ratings

December 18, 2008 3:00 PM

CBS continued its strong ratings performance for the week, taking the top spot Wednesday night among viewers 18-49 with a 3.2 rating/9 share, and among total viewers with 11.9 million.

Criminal Minds

Overall the network was down one-tenth of a ratings point from last week’s performance. “The New Adventures of Old Christine” (2.0/9, 7.5 million) and “Gary Unmarried” (2.3/7, 7.5 million) were down 9% and 4%, respectively, from the week before, while “Criminal Minds” (3.9/11, 15 million) and “CSI: NY” (3.6/10, 13.3 million) remained flat. “Minds” finished as the night’s top show in the demographic and in total viewers.

The top show at 8 p.m. was the NBC holiday special “A Muppet Christmas: Letters to Santa” (2.4/7, 7.4 million). The program gave the network its highest rating in the time slot in 11 weeks, and represented a 71% increase over last week’s “Little Spirit: Christmas in New York.”

Episodes of “Life” (1.7/5, 5.2 million) and “Law & Order” (1.9/5, 6.9 million) in the 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. hours, respectively, helped give NBC second place for the night, posting a 2.0/6 (6.5 million).

ABC and Fox tied for third with 1.8/5 for the night. Episodes of “Pushing Daisies” (1.6/5, 4.8 million), “Private Practice” (2.3/6, 6.7 million) and “Dirty Sexy Money” (1.7/5, 5.2 million) were down 11%, 15% and 15%, respectively, from their season averages. ABC placed third in total viewers with 5.6 million.

A new episode of “Secret Millionaire” (2.2/7, 6.6 million) was down 21% from last Wednesday’s telecast. A repeat of “Bones” (1.4/4, 4.2 million) gave Fox a fourth-place finish among total viewers (5.4 million).

The CW finished the night fifth (0.7/2, 1.9 million) with a special presentation of “The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show” (0.9/3, 2.4 million) and the final of “Sylista” (0.6/2, 1.4 million). Overall the network posted a 1.0/3 among women 18-34.

Ratings Chart for Wednesday, Dec. 17

December 18, 2008 11:07 AM

Prime Time Preliminary Wednesday Ratings

CBS won the night among viewers ages 18-49, posting a 3.2 rating/9 share, as well as total viewers with 11.9 million. NBC's new holiday special "A Muppet Christmas: Letters to Santa" won the 8 p.m. hour, giving the network its first win in that block in 11 weeks. New episodes on ABC were all down from their season averages, giving the network a third-place tie with Fox for the night (both 1.8/5). A new episode of "Secret Millionaire" dropped 21% from its last Wednesday night showing.

 

8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

1.8 / 5

Pushing Daisies

1.6 / 5

4.8 mil

Private Practice

2.3 / 6

6.7 mil

Dirty Sexy Money

1.7 / 5

5.2 mil

CBS

3.2 / 9

The New Adventures of Old Christine

2.0 / 6

7.5 mil

Gary Unmarried

2.3 / 7

7.5 mil

Criminal Minds

3.9 / 11

15 mil

CSI: NY

3.6 / 10

13.3 mil

FOX

1.8 / 5

Secret Millionaire

2.2 / 7

6.6 mil

Bones

1.4 / 4

4.2 mil

No Programming

NBC

2.0 / 6

A Muppet Christmas: Letters to Santa

2.4 / 7

7.4 mil

Life

1.7 / 5

5.2 mil

Law & Order

1.9 / 5

6.9 mil

CW

0.7 / 2

The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show

0.9 / 3

2.4 mil

Stylista

0.6 / 2

1.4 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 112.8 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

Ratings Chart for Tuesday, Dec. 16

December 17, 2008 12:04 PM

Prime Time Preliminary Tuesday Ratings

Despite the benefit of a huge lead-in from the season finale of "The Biggest Loser: Families," "Momma's Boys" notched a mediocre 2.5 rating/7 share among adults 18-49. About 6 million viewers tuned in Tuesday night, according to preliminary Nielsen data. "Momma's Boys" finished a distant second behind an original episode of CBS' "Without a Trace" (3.2/9, 14.9 million).

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8

8:30

9

9:30

10

10:30

ABC

2.0 / 5

A Charlie Brown Christmas

2.9 / 8

8.3 mil

According to Jim

1.8 / 5

5.1 mil

According to Jim

1.6 / 4

4.5 mil

Eli Stone

1.5 / 4

5 mil

CBS

3.8 / 10

NCIS

3.9 / 11

19.9 mil

The Mentalist

4.2 / 11

19.3 mil

Without a Trace

3.2 / 9

14.5 mil

FOX

2.2 / 6

House

2.4 / 7

6.4 mil

Fringe

1.9 / 5

4.9 mil

No Programming

NBC

3.8 / 10

The Biggest Loser: Families

4.5 / 12

11.7 mil

Momma's Boys

2.5 / 7

6.1 mil

CW

0.4 / 1

90210

0.5 / 1

1.1 mil

Privileged

0.4 / 1

1 mil

No Programming

Source: Nielsen Media Research

*Ratings are specified in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic and viewership in P2+.

A note about ratings: Ratings are expressed as percentages of Nielsen's estimated 112.8 million U.S. television households. The first number, the rating, is a percentage of households tuned into a specific program at a specific time.

The second number, the share, is a percentage of households with televisions in use tuned into that same program. For example, if a show obtains a 10.2/16, this means that 10.2% of all U.S. households tuned into the program at some point during the broadcast. Meanwhile, 16% of all households watching television during the time period viewed the program at some point. Ratings are broken down further by demographic, as networks sell advertising time based on the makeup of the audience.

CBS Comedies Score Monster Monday

December 16, 2008 12:04 PM

CBS’ Monday night comedies all posted series or season highs, helping the network not only take the night but also reach its biggest Monday audience since February 2007.

The Big Bang Theory

CBS wrapped up the night with a 4.3 rating/11 share among adults 18-49, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data. The network also had the most viewers for the night with 13.6 million, more than double the audience of second-place NBC.

“The Big Bang Theory” posted series highs with a 4.2/11 (11.4 million). “How I Met Your Mother” did a 4.6/11 (11.4 million), a series high for ratings in the adults 18-49 demographic and its best viewer delivery since January 2006.

“Two and a Half Men” (5.6/13, 18 million) posted its highest ratings since Feb. 5, 2007, the night after the Super Bowl. It had the most viewers since the episode following the “Everybody Loves Raymond” series finale in May 2005 and the most since moving to 9 p.m.

“Worst Week” (3.6/9, 12.1 million) tied for first at 9:30 p.m. in the ratings but took the top spot in total viewers. The freshman comedy reached series highs in both ratings and viewer delivery.

A new episode of “CSI: Miami” (3.8/10, 14.5 million) rounded off the night, giving CBS its best Monday ratings performance since September’s premiere week this year and the largest Monday audience since Feb. 26, 2007, excluding NCAA Championship Mondays.

NBC finished the night in second (2.6/7, 6.5 million), with “Chuck” (2.6/7, 7.6 million), the fall finale of “Heroes” (3.6/8, 7.8 million) and “My Own Worst Enemy” (1.7/4, 4 million) showing +8%, 0% and +13% changes, respectively, from last week. “Chuck” posted its best performance for the year in terms of total viewers.

On Fox, “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” (1.9/5, 5.3 million) remained flat from last week, while “Prison Break” (2.2/5, 5.7 million) was up one-tenth of a rating point from last week. The network finished the night in third averaging a 2.1/5 (5.5 million).

ABC placed fourth (1.5/4, 4.9 million) with a telecast of the special “Charlie Brown: I Want a Dog for Christmas” (2.2/6, 7.4 million), down 15% from its airing last year, and the premiere of the “20/20” special “Drama High: The Making of a High School Musical” posting a 1.2/3 (3.7 million) from 9-11 p.m.

The CW finished fifth (0.6/1, 1.4 million), with repeats of “Gossip Girl” (0.7/2, 1.6 million) and “One Tree Hill” (0.5/1, 1.2 million). The network averaged a 1.0/3 among women 18-34 for the night.

NBC’s Football Coverage Kicks ‘Survivor’ Finale Into 2nd Place

December 15, 2008 12:31 PM

NFL reigned supreme Sunday night, with NBC’s telecast of the New York Giants-Dallas Cowboys game leading the network to a ratings win.

NFL

“NBC Sunday Night Football” posted a preliminary 7.5 rating/17 share among adults 18-49, up 50% from the final ratings for last week’s game, according to Nielsen Media Research numbers. The game put the network in the top spot for the night, with an average 6.2/15 (16.7 million viewers).

Ratings for NBC’s “Football Night in America” increased throughout the night leading up to the start of “SNF.” The pre-game coverage posted a 2.2/6 at 7 p.m., a 3.9/11 at 7:30 p.m. and a 5.6/14 at 8 p.m. Numbers for live programming, however, are approximate and may change once final numbers are released Tuesday.

CBS’ season finale of “Survivor: Gabon” posted a 4.5/10, marking the franchise’s second-lowest-rated season finale. Although NFL overrun (8.1/23) helped “60 Minutes” (4.6/12) post an 84% increase over last week’s telecast, “Survivor” was down 13% from last year’s “China” finale but up 2% from the “Micronesia” finale earlier this year.

The “Survivor: Reunion” special did a 4.1/10, helping CBS wrap up the night in second place with a 4.9/12 (16.4 million viewers).

Holiday film “The Santa Clause 2” led ABC for the night, giving the network a third-place finish with a 2.3/6 (7.8 million viewers). “Santa” averaged a 2.7/7 from 8-10 p.m.

ABC opened the night with a new episode of “America’s Funniest Home Videos” posting a 2.0/6. A “Desperate Housewives” repeat did a 1.8/4.

Animation repeats on Fox gave the network fourth place for the night with an average 2.1/5 (4.9 million viewers). Two episodes of “King of the Hill” in the 7 p.m. hour did a 1.7/6 and 1.6/4, followed by “The Simpsons” with a 2.5/6 and another “King” with a 2.0/5. “Family Guy” (2.6/6) and “American Dad” (2.2/5) aired in the 9 p.m. hour.

The CW finished in fifth (0.4/1, 1 million viewers), airing an episode of “Jericho” (0.3/1) and the Mel Brooks film “Spaceballs” (0.5/1).

Friday night: Holiday specials helped CBS win the night (2.2/7), led by airings of “Frosty the Snowman” (2.4/8), “Frosty Returns” (2.4/8) and “The Flight Before Christmas” (2.2/7). NBC finished second (1.4/4), ABC and Fox tied for third (1.3/4) and The CW came in fifth (0.5/2).

Saturday night: Fox’s crime-themed reality fare, “Cops” and “America’s Most Wanted,” helped the network take the top spot with a 1.7/6 for the night. ABC, sans NCAA football, and NBC tied for second (1.3/4) and CBS placed third (1.0/3).

—Sergio Ibarra

‘CSI’ Soars as Fishburne Joins Cast

December 12, 2008 12:12 PM

Season-high performances from new episodes of “CSI” and “Eleventh Hour” on CBS helped the network win Thursday night in both viewers 18-49 and total viewers.

CSI

CBS wrapped up Thursday with an average 4.5/12 in the 18-49 demographic (15.8 million viewers), according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research numbers.

A new episode of “CSI,” which introduced Laurence Fishburne as a series regular as William Petersen’s Gil Grissom departs, drew a 5.7/14 (20.6 million), reaching a new high for the season and taking the top spot for the night. The episode’s strong performance (along with repeats on ABC), helped a new episode of “Eleventh Hour” draw its biggest audience to date in total viewers (13.4 million), averaging a 3.8/10 in the 10 p.m. hour. A new episode of “Survivor” (4.1/11, 13.2 million) gave CBS the top spots in each prime-time hour.

New episodes of comedies and “ER” brought NBC to second place (3.4/9, 7.7 million) for the night. A holiday episode of “The Office” drew a 4.8/12 (8.8 million) and was the No. 2 show for the night across the broadcast networks. “My Name Is Earl” (2.7/8, 6.6 million) and “Kath & Kim” (2.4/7, 5.3 million) were on par with season averages, as were “30 Rock” (3.8/9, 7.5 million) and “ER” (3.4/9, 8.9 million).

ABC took third for the night with an average 1.7/4 (5.4 million), due to a round of reruns of “Ugly Betty” (1.5/4, 5.4 million), “Grey’s Anatomy” (2.1/5, 6.4 million) and “Private Practice” (1.4/4, 4.5 million), which moved to its new time period.

Fox came in fourth for the night (1.6/4, 5 million), with “Secret Millionaire” (2.0/6, 5.4 million) performing lower than its two previous Wednesday-night telecasts. “Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?” did a 1.2/3 (4.6 million) in the 9 p.m. hour.

The CW placed fifth (0.8/2, 2.2 million) with repeats of “Smallville” (0.9/3, 2.5 million) and “Supernatural” (0.7/2, 2 million). The network pulled a 0.9/3 among viewers 18-34.

—Sergio Ibarra

‘Christine’ Looks Hot on CBS, ‘Secret Millionaire’ Grows for Fox

December 11, 2008 12:13 PM

New episodes on CBS Wednesday gave the network strong ratings in the 18-49 demographic, while Fox held steady ground thanks to a fresh episode of the new reality series “Secret Millionaire.”

The New Adventures of Old Christine

CBS averaged a 3.2 rating/9 share among viewers 18-49, easily winning the night, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research numbers. The network also won the night among total viewers, averaging 12 million.

New episodes of “The New Adventures of Old Christine” (8 p.m.; 2.2/7), “Gary Unmarried” (8:30 p.m.; 2.4/7), “Criminal Minds” (9 p.m.; 3.9/10) and “CSI: NY” (10 p.m.; 3.5/10) also saw increases from each of their most recent broadcasts two weeks ago. (“Christine” was up 10%, “Gary” 9%, “Minds” 15% and “CSI: NY” 13% from their Nov. 26 performance.) “Christine” also hit a viewership high for the season, averaging 8.3 million viewers.

Fox’s new reality series “Secret Millionaire” helped land the network in second place for the night (2.1/6, 5.9 million). “Millionaire” averaged a 2.7/8 during the 8 p.m. hour, up 17% from its premiere in the same time period the week before. An encore of “Bones” in its new 9 p.m. time slot pulled in a 1.5/4. Overall Fox was down 19% from “Millionaire’s” two-hour debut the week before.

ABC came in third for the night with a 1.9/5 and 5.7 million viewers. At 8 p.m. “Pushing Daisies” (1.6/5) was up one-tenth from last week, as was “Dirty Sexy Money” (1.8/5) at 10 p.m. “Private Practice” remained the same from last week with a 2.4/6 at 9 p.m. All three shows, however, were down 10%-11% from their season-to-date averages (“Daisies” 1.8/5, “Practice” 2.7/7, “Money” 2.0/5).

NBC averaged a 1.8/5 and 6 million viewers, dropping to fourth place for the night. The holiday special “Little Spirit: Christmas in New York” averaged a 1.4/4 at 8 p.m., while new episodes of “Life” (9 p.m., 1.8/5) and “Law & Order” (10 p.m., 2.2/6) were down 25% and 27%, respectively, from last week in the 18-49 demo after posting highs.

The CW came in fifth (0.5/1, 1.3 million), with two episodes of “Stylista,” an encore at 8 p.m. (0.4/1) and a new episode at 9 p.m. (0.6/2). For the night, the network averaged a 0.8/2 among women 18-34, its target demographic.

—Sergio Ibarra

Holiday ‘House’ Gives Fox a Merry Tuesday

December 10, 2008 11:05 AM

A holiday-themed “House” lifted Fox to the ratings victory last night, while ABC landed in fourth with the lowest-rated “Eli Stone” of the season and a steep decline for “According to Jim.”

House

“House,” wrapping up its 2008 originals, posted a 5.6 rating/15 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data.

The show gained 12% from last week, while “Fringe” (2.7/7) was in repeats. Fox finished the night in first with a 4.1/11.

ABC, on the other hand, took home another fourth-place finish with a 1.7/4. A special holiday-themed “America’s Funniest Home Videos” (2.0/5) fell in line with its Sunday telecasts.

Two episodes of “According to Jim” (1.6/4, 1.7/4) slid 27% and 15% from last week’s season premiere. “Eli Stone” (1.4/4) dipped one-tenth of a ratings point to a season low. “Stone” has failed to show any improvement over the past seven weeks.

NBC’s “The Biggest Loser: Families” (3.6/9) is gaining momentum as it approaches its finale next Tuesday, growing 6% from last week. “Law & Order: SVU” (3.7/10) was on par with last week.

NBC placed second with a 3.6/10.

CBS aired repeats, taking third in adults 18-49 with a 2.4/6. The network did win the night in total viewers with 12.1 million.

The CW also aired repeats, landing in fifth place with a 0.5/1.

‘Boston Legal’ Exits on High Note, but CBS Wins Monday

December 9, 2008 1:35 PM

ABC’s “Boston Legal” ended its five-season run last night with ratings that matched its season-premiere numbers, while CBS waltzed away with a nightly win thanks to its original comedies.

Boston Legal

“Legal” posted a 2.4 rating/6 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data. The show gained 10% from last week, but placed last in the 9 to 11 p.m. time period versus NBC and CBS. Its last episode matched its season premiere in adults 18-49.

ABC also presented its annual airing of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” (3.8/10), which declined 17% from its showing last year.

ABC placed second with a 2.9/7.

CBS captured first place in ratings and viewers with an average 4.1/10 and 12.5 million viewers. “The Big Bang Theory” (3.7/10, 10.8 million), “How I Met Your Mother” (4.2/11, 10.5 million), “Two and a Half Men” (5.2/13, 15.6 million) and “CSI: Miami” (4.0/10, 13.6 million) all landed around average.

However, “Big Bang” hit its largest audience to date last night.

“Worst Week” (3.5/8, 10.6 million) did enjoy modest gains, increasing 9% from its last original episode.

NBC’s “Chuck” (2.4/6) and “Heroes” (3.6/9) were essentially flat from last week. “My Own Worst Enemy” (1.8/5) managed to stop the bleeding and posted a gain from the previous week of 13% after a seven-week decline.

NBC took third with a 2.6/7.

Fox’s “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” tumbled, declining 18% to a 1.8/5. “Prison Break” ticked down one-tenth of a ratings point to a 2.1/5.

Fox was fourth with a 2.0/5.

“Gossip Girl” (1.5/4) on The CW remained steady from last week, matching its 3.6/10 in the network’s target demographic of women 18-34. “Girl” continues to give “Privileged” (1.0/2) an assist as it subs in for “One Tree Hill.” Last night’s episode tied the show’s series highs in key demographics, which it set last week when it began airing behind “Gossip Girl.”

The CW took fifth with a 1.2/3.

Odds and Ends:

—In our weekly MyNetworkTV check-in, the network set another programming record with almost 2 million total viewers last week. MyNet beat The CW last week in total viewers for the second straight week.

‘Amazing Race’ Has Upbeat Ending, But Fox Wins Sunday With Football

December 8, 2008 12:03 PM

CBS’ “The Amazing Race” finished its 13th competition with gains in viewers versus last year’s ending, while NFL overrun lifted Fox to a first-place ratings finish on Sunday night.

Amazing Race

Fox’s NFL overrun drew a 9.0 rating/24 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data. A rollicking Pittsburgh Steelers/Dallas Cowboys game, which featured a fourth-quarter comeback by the Steelers, fueled the overrun.

Fox posted a 4.6/11 for the night, coupling the NFL with a BCS Selection Show (3.9/10, down 9% from last year) and reruns of its animated series.

“The Amazing Race 13” crowned brother-and-sister team Nick and Starr Spangler the $1 million winners, posting a 3.1/7 with 10.6 million viewers. The rating is on par with January’s 12th edition finale, while the viewership increased by 8%.

A NFL-less “60 Minutes” was on par with a 2.6/7 and 13.8 million viewers, while the Hallmark movie “Front of the Class” drove in a 2.8/7 and 11.8 million.

CBS took fourth for the night in adults 18-49 with a 2.8/7 and was first in total viewers with 12 million.

ABC’s “Desperate Housewives” gained 4% week-to-week to land at a 5.9/13. The special “Ty Pennington: Behind the Scenes” (1.7/5) kicked off the night, followed by “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (3.3/8), which tumbled 11% from last week to a season low.

“Brothers and Sisters” (3.9/10) enjoyed a 15% weekly increase.

ABC placed second with a 3.7/9.

NBC took third place with a 3.6/9 on the back of its coverage of the Washington Redskins/Baltimore Ravens matchup (4.5/11). The game declined 15% in preliminary ratings against last week’s Bears/Vikings contest.

The CW posted a 0.5/1 for fifth place, with a “Jericho” repeat and movie “The Cutting Edge.” Of course, last night trumped every Media Rights Capital-programmed Sunday night this season in adults 18-49.

CBS (2.2/7, 9.3 million) took Friday night with original episodes of “Ghost Whisperer” (2.4/8, 9.7 million) and “Numb3rs” (2.3/7, 9.7 million). ABC won Saturday with the Big 12 championship matchup between Oklahoma and Missouri, with the game and the network averaging a 2.8/8.

Viewers Fascinated by ABC’s ‘Fascinating’ Special

December 5, 2008 11:12 AM

Barbara Walters’ “The 10 Most Fascinating People of 2008,” which crowned President-elect Barack Obama as No. 1 on the list, helped lift ABC to its best Thursday ratings performance since premiere week in late September. Tina Fey and Barbara Walters

ABC’s “Fascinating” posted a 4.2 rating/11 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data. The show landed very close to its performance last year, down two-tenths of a ratings point.

For a little background, “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling topped Ms. Walters’ list last year, with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi claiming the top spot in 2006.

“Ugly Betty” (2.6/7) was in line with its last original performance, while “Grey’s Anatomy” (5.5/14) chalked up its worst original rating ever outside of clip shows and Thanksgiving airings.

ABC placed first for the night with a 4.1/11 and second in viewers with 12.3 million.

“CSI” on CBS bottomed out in adults 18-49 with a 4.6/11, its worst original Thursday showing ever, excluding Thanksgiving. The show drew 17.4 million viewers.

“Survivor” (4.0/11, 12.8 million) matched its pre-Thanksgiving showing, while “Eleventh Hour” (2.7/7, 10.9 million) dipped to its lowest rating of the season.

CBS placed second in adults 18-49 with a 3.8/10 and first in total viewers with 13.7 million.

NBC’s Thursday fell in line with its pre-Thanksgiving showing, with “My Name Is Earl” (2.5/7), “Kath and Kim” (2.2/6), “The Office” (4.3/11), “30 Rock” (3.4/8) and “ER” (3.2/9) ending up nearly on par with their last original episodes. NBC took third with a 3.1/8.

Fox and The CW were in repeats, ending fourth and fifth with an average 1.7/4 and 0.8/2, respectively.

‘Secret Millionaire’ Wins Hour for Fox

December 4, 2008 10:17 AM

Two episodes of Fox’s “Secret Millionaire” debuted to solid numbers, with the show’s second episode ruling the 9 p.m. hour, Christmas specials dotted other networks to mixed results.

Secret Millionaire

“Millionaire” launched at a 2.3 rating/6 share at 8 p.m. and a 3.0 rating/8 share at 9 p.m. in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data.

According to Fox, the 9 o’clock “Millionaire” is the network’s best-rated non-sports program in that time slot this season. But that may come under the category of “faint praise”, considering it was home to “Til Death” and “Do Not Disturb” which didn’t rule their slots.

Fox took second on the night, averaging a 2.6/7.

Holiday classic “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” (4.2/12, 11.7 million) slipped 18% from last year’s showing on CBS, but handily won the hour. Appearing after a special Grammy nominations concert (2.4/6, 7.1 million), the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show (3.6/10, 8.7 million) gained a full ratings point from last year’s program.

CBS took first in adults 18-49 with a 3.4/9 and second in viewers with 9.2 million.

NBC’s switch-throwing “Christmas in Rockefeller Center” special (2.2/6) gained slightly, 10%, from last year. The special helped out “Life” (2.3/6), which posted a season high, while “Law & Order” (2.9/8) reached its best numbers since May.

NBC was third in adults 18-49 with a 2.5/7 and first in viewers with 9.9 million.

ABC’s Wednesday night continues to underperform. “Pushing Daisies” (1.5/4) was up from last week’s pre-Thanksgiving airing, but was still off 21% from its previous season average.

“Private Practice” (2.6/7) landed on par with its previous showings, while “Dirty Sexy Money” (1.7/5) tied for its series low.

ABC placed fourth with a 1.9/5.

The CW took fifth with a 0.5/1, with a new “Stylista” drawing a 0.6/1, dwindling without the benefit of an “America’s Next Top Model” lead-in.

Strong ‘Mentalist’ Lifts CBS, But Fox Wins in 18-49

December 3, 2008 10:51 AM

CBS’ “The Mentalist” drew its highest audience to date Tuesday, while a holiday special and the return of “According to Jim” dropped ABC to fourth place in the nightly ratings.

Mentalist

“The Mentalist” wrangled a 3.8 rating/9 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data. The show also brought in 18.8 million viewers, its largest audience ever, thanks to the absence of competition from “Dancing With the Stars.”

“NCIS” (3.7/10, 18.5 million) and “Without a Trace” (3.7/10, 12.2 million) were on average with last week’s results. CBS took first in viewers with 16.5 million and third in adults 18-49 with 3.3/9.

With “Stars” gone, ABC fell to fourth. The holiday special “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” (3.1/8) was even with last year’s airing. Two episodes of “According to Jim” (2.2/6, 2.0/5) improved 83% and 67% over the comedy’s start last year, while “Eli Stone” (1.6/4) tied its lowest rating of the season.

ABC placed fourth for the night with a 2.2/6.

Fox won Tuesday with a 4.3/11, on the backs of “House” (5.0/13) and “Fringe” (3.7/9). “House” declined two-tenths of a ratings point from last week, while “Fringe” improved 9%.

NBC’s “The Biggest Loser” (3.4/9) also benefited from a lack of “Stars” competition, moving up 31% from last week. “Law and Order: SVU” (3.6/10) was on par. NBC nabbed second place with a 3.4/9.

The CW was in repeats for a fifth-place finish at a 0.4/1.

Odds and Ends:

—A first for MyNet: The fledgling broadcast network beat The CW in adults 18-49 (0.6/2 vs. 0.5/1) and total viewers (1.86 million vs. 1.4 million) for the week of Nov. 24. “WWE’s Friday Night Smackdown” has helped move the needle positively for MyNet, and the “World Magic Awards” lifted the network further during the week of Nov. 24. To be fair, The CW has stated that its key demographic is women 18-34.

—Spanish-language network Telemundo pulled in its highest November ratings in 16 years. For Monday-through-Friday prime time, Telemundo averaged 1.2 million viewers, an increase of 27% from last year, and grew 26% in adults 18-49.

ABC’s ‘Samantha’ Stumbles, CW’s ‘Gossip’ Helps ‘Privileged’

December 2, 2008 1:59 PM

With another season of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” over, its former lead-out, “Samantha Who,” tumbled to a series low, while The CW’s “Privileged” posted a series high positioned behind “Gossip Girl.”

Privileged

Two back-to-back episodes of “Samantha Who” posted a 2.2 rating/5 share and a 2.1 rating/5 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data.

“Samantha’s” back-to-back episodes declined 24% and 28%, respectively, from last week’s post-“Dancing” episode.

Holiday specials filled the 8 o’clock hour, with the second year pairing of “Shrek the Halls” (3.3/9) and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (3.8/9) dropping dramatically from the duo’s strong showing last year, off 54% and 44%.

“Boston Legal” was average with a 2.3/6. ABC took second with a 2.7/7.

CBS finished first with repeats, ending the night with a 2.9/7 and 9.9 million viewers.

The CW’s “Gossip Girl” (1.5/4) stayed essentially flat with its last original episode two weeks ago, drawing a 3.5/9 in the network’s key demographic of women 18-34.

“Privileged” (1.0/2) settled in to the post-“Gossip” slot, boosting the show to a series high in women 18-34 with a 2.4/6, a 26% increase over its last showing on Tuesday.

The CW was fifth with a 1.2/3.

Fox’s “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” woke up and moved the needle substantially for the first time in two months, increasing 22% from last week to a 2.2/6. “Prison Break” was flat with a 2.1/5.

Fox took fourth with a 2.2/5.

NBC’s “Heroes” increased slightly from its multi-week holding pattern, lifting a tenth of a ratings point to a 3.6/8. “My Own Worst Enemy” continued its decline for the seventh week in a row, down a tenth of a point to a 1.7/4. “Chuck” (2.5/6) moved up by a tenth of a point from last week, but earned its largest audience in nearly a year with 7.2 million. NBC was third with a 2.6/6.

Fans Return to Football on NBC

December 1, 2008 12:54 PM

Football triumphed Sunday night as viewers settled back into normal viewing patterns after the long Thanksgiving weekend.

bears

NBC’s coverage of the Chicago Bears-Minnesota Vikings game posted a 5.3 rating/12 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data.

The game rose 15% over last week’s Indianapolis Colts/San Diego Chargers matchup. NBC captured the night with a 4.3/10.

NFL overrun pushed CBS into a close second with a nightly 4.1/10, as well as a first-place finish in total viewers with 15 million.

The rest of CBS’ lineup due to the overrun is considered approximate and is likely to change once final data is released later tomorrow.

ABC’s “Desperate Housewives” (5.6/12) declined 10% from its most recent original episode two weeks ago, while “America’s Funniest Home Videos” (2.3/6), “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (3.6/8) and “Brothers and Sisters” (3.5/8) were average. ABC placed third with a 3.7/9.

Fox’s animation block took a dip from its last original airing two weeks ago. “Family Guy” led the declines, dropping 24% to a 3.2/7 from last week. “The Simpsons” (3.5/8, down 10%), “King of the Hill” (2.8/6, down 15%) and “American Dad” (2.5/5, down 22%) also took hits from their last original episodes.

A “Jericho” (0.4/1) repeat and the movie “The Crocodile Hunter: Collision Course” (0.4/1) on The CW (0.4/1) boosted the night 100% over last week’s final airing of MRC-produced material on Sundays.

As of this time, there are zero Facebook groups focused on “Easy Money” or “In Harm’s Way.” But listen up, you fat cats at The CW, a “Valentine” group is currently thriving … with 19 people … and is letting its voice be heard.

Of the show’s cancellation, the group’s bio says: “The show is on CW Sundays at 8:00 p.m. … well … not anymore =[.”

Frowny face, indeed.