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.


Ratings Chart Attack!

Additional Delays from Nielsen

May 5, 2009 2:36 PM

Nielsen still has issues holding over from this weekend, delaying preliminary numbers for Monday, May 4, as well as weekly figures.

In the meantime, enjoy this clip of Jimmy Fallon beating Jennifer Aniston at grapefruit bowling. Why?

Why not?

Primetime Ratings for May 3 Delayed by Nielsen

May 4, 2009 12:36 PM

Preliminary Fast National ratings for Sunday, May 3, have been delayed by Nielsen Media Research due to processing issues. Check back here later for updates.

In the meantime, here's a clip from last night's "Family Guy" on Fox featuring guest star Lauren Conrad (MTV's "The Hills").

ABC Wins Thursday as Many Shows Sink in Ratings

May 1, 2009 11:15 AM

ABC won its second consecutive Thursday of the sweeps on a night that saw a slew of shows—including NBC’s “Southland” and CBS’ “CSI”—crashing to new lows.

Ugly Betty

ABC kicked off the night with “Ugly Betty,” which went on hiatus in order to make room for “In the Motherhood” and “Samantha Who?” Last night’s episode scored a 2.0 rating/6 share among adults 19-49 and 6.8 million viewers, according to preliminary Nielsen figures. “Betty” was on par with its most recent performances, but improved on the last “Motherhood”-“Samantha” block by 33% since its last telecast two weeks ago (a repeat “Grey’s Anatomy” aired in the slot last week). An original “Grey’s Anatomy” (5.0/15, 13.9 million) remained flat from last week and matched its lowest original rating ever, while the season finale of “Private Practice” (3.5/10, 9.8 million) won the 10 p.m. hour but came in 10% below its previous season-to-date average.

CBS’ “CSI” (3.6/9, 15.3 million) continues to take major hits since the departure of William Petersen. Last night’s episode was the most watched program of the night, but it also ranked as the show’s lowest-rated telecast ever. “CSI” posted a 3% dip from last week’s episode, but it was off 27% from its season-to-date average. At 8 p.m. a new “Survivor: Tocantins” (3.6/11, 11.7 million) posted a one-tenth of a point gain over last week. A repeat of “Criminal Minds” (2.4/7, 10.3 million) at 10 p.m. improved the network’s time period by 21% over last week’s episode of “Harper’s Island,” which has since been moved to a Saturday slot. http://www.tvweek.com/news/2009/04/harpers_island_moved_to_saturd.php

NBA Playoffs coverage on TNT may have affected performances for several broadcast shows, particularly those that skew more toward male audiences.

NBC’s “Southland” (2.1/6, 6.7 million) continued to lose steam, particularly against stronger competition Thursday night. Yesterday’s episode was down 13% from last week and ranks as the lowest-rated to date, trailing “Private Practice” and “Criminal Minds” in the hour. “My Name Is Earl” (2.2/7, 5.3 million) and “Parks & Recreation” (2.3/7, 5.3 million) both were flat from last week. “The Office” (3.7/10, 7.3 million) clocked in with its lowest-rated episode in its regular time period this season, while “30 Rock” (2.9/7, 6 million) also hit a season low when following an original “Office” episode.

Fox’s “Bones” (2.2/7, 8.8 million) and “Hell’s Kitchen” (2.8/7, 7 million) post posted slight gains from last week (down 4% and 7%, respectively).

The CW’s “Smallville” (1.4/4, 3.3 million) and “Supernatural” (1.3/3, 3 million) both posted bumps over last week’s episodes (up 8% and 18%, respectively). The network averaged a 1.2/4 among women 18-34.

For the night: ABC finished first (3.5/10, 10.2 million), followed by CBS (3.2/9, 12.5 million), a tie between Fox (2.5/7, 7.9 million) and NBC (2.5/7, 6.2 million), and The CW (1.3/4, 3.1 million).

Final Nationals update (3 p.m.): ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy” climbed to a 5.1/13, CBS’ “CSI” to a 3.7/9 and Fox’s “Bones” to a 2.3/7. Shows that took a dip included CBS’ “Criminal Minds” repeat (2.3/7) and NBC’s “My Name Is Earl” (2.1/7), “Parks and Recreation” (2.2/7) and “Southland” (2.3/7). At the network level, ABC increased to a 3.6/10 and remained in the top spot.

Fox Programming Outdraws Obama Press Conference

April 30, 2009 12:00 PM

Fox’s duo of “Lie to Me” and “American Idol” won the night as the other broadcast networks covered President Barack Obama’s press conference, while the 100th episode of ABC’s “Lost” took some hits in the 9 p.m. hour.


In the 8 p.m. hour, Fox’s “Lie to Me” scored a 2.4 rating/7 share among adults 18-49 and 7.9 million viewers. Last night’s episode was up 4% over last week. “Lie” also beat all of the other networks covering President Obama’s press conference in the hour.

ABC (1.6/5, 6.1 million), CBS (1.5/6, 6 million) and NBC (1.6/5, 6.7 million) all fared similarly, bringing the president’s total among the broadcast networks to a 4.7/16 (18.8 million). Those figures are estimates, and final numbers from Nielsen will be sustained.

Going against “Lie” and Obama, The CW’s “America’s Next Top Model” (1.8/6, 4 million) was down one-tenth of a point from last week, but it also beat each network’s presidential coverage. Among the younger adults 18-34 audience, “Top Model” ranked first in the timeslot.

In the 9 p.m. hour, Fox’s “American Idol” led the way against the 100th episode of “Lost” on ABC. “Idol” scored a 7.5/19 (21.8 million viewers), down a heftier-than-usual 10%. “Lost” (3.9/10, 8.8 million) was off 3% from its last original episode two weeks ago (last week was a special clips episode) and came in 11% below its season-to-date average. “Lost” remained the No. 1 scripted series of the night, beating out CBS’ “Criminal Minds” (3.3/8, 13.3 million) in the hour, as well as repeats of “Law & Order: SVU” on NBC and “90210” on The CW.

At 10 p.m., CBS took the top spot with “CSI: NY” (3.2/9, 12.5 million), which posted a 10% increase over its last original episode two weeks ago but dipped 9% from “Criminal Minds’” performance in the time period last week. NBC’s “Law & Order” (2.2/6, 7.7 million) matched its highest rating since early February, while ABC’s “The Unusuals” (1.7/5, 5.1 million) posted a 21% increase from last week, although that number may come down once final figures are released.

For the night: Fox (5.0/14, 14.9 million) finished first, followed by CBS (2.6/7, 10.6 million), ABC (2.4/7, 6.7 million), NBC (1.7/5, 6.4 million) and The CW (1.2/3, 2.6 million).

Final Nationals updated (4 p.m.): Fox’s “Idol” bumped up to a 7.7/19, while “Lie to Me” trickled down to a 2.3/7. On ABC, “Lost” climbed to a 4.1/10, while “The Unusuals” slipped to a 1.5/4. At the network level, factoring out sustained presidential press conference coverage brought CBS’ average to a 3.3/8 and ABC’s to a 2.8/7, while all other networks' tallies remained the same as preliminary numbers.

‘Idol,’ ‘Fringe’ Give Fox the Win; Duff Spot Boosts ‘SVU’

April 29, 2009 11:29 AM

Fox won Wednesday night thanks to a strong “Idol”-“Fringe” pairing, while Hilary Duff helped NBC’s “Law & Order: SVU” post its second-best rating of the season and its highest since early January.


Fox led the way with a Rat Pack-themed performance edition of “American Idol,” which scored a 7.9 rating/22 share and 22.5 million viewers. While preliminary numbers were low compared with last week, projections for final numbers have “Idol” scoring around an 8.1 or 8.2. Similarly, while “Fringe” (4.2/10, 10.6 million) saw its best performance since early February, its final rating is projected to dip to a 4.0 once “Idol” runover is factored in. The network, however, remains in prime position for No. 1.

NBC’s “Law & Order: SVU” (3.9/11, 10.5 million), featuring a guest appearance by Ms. Duff, dominated the 10 p.m. hour. Last night’s episode posted an 18% increase over the show’s last original telecast earlier this month. From 8-10 p.m., “The Biggest Loser” (3.6/10, 9.4 million) was about on par with recent performances.

Some of CBS’ Tuesday night dramas were off a bit from recent performances. “NCIS” (3.4/10, 16.3 million) slipped 6% from its last original episode three weeks ago. Last night’s episode featuring Chris O’Donnell and LL Cool J was the first of a two-part arc for a potential series spinoff. “Without a Trace” (2.5/7, 12.3 million) took a 17% dip from its last new telecast two weeks ago, although it ranked as the most watched show in the hour. Similarly, “The Mentalist” (3.7/9, 16.9 million) was the most watched show in the 9 p.m. hour, posting a one-tenth of a point increase over last week.

On ABC, a results episode of “Dancing With the Stars” (3.2/8, 14.3 million) was flat from last week. At 10 p.m., “Cupid” (1.7/5, 6.2 million) gave the network a slight bump over last week’s telecast of “The Unusuals” in the timeslot, coming in flat from its last original airing two weeks ago. The network aired back-to-back episodes of “According to Jim” (0.9/3, 3.4 million, and 1.0/3, 3.7 million) in the 8 p.m. hour.

The CW’s “Reaper” (0.7/2, 1.8 million) and “90210” (0.9/2, 1.8 million) both came in slightly lower than recent performances. The network averaged a 1.1/3 among women 18-34.

For the night: Fox was first with a 6.0/16 (16.6 million), followed by NBC (3.7/10, 9.8 million), CBS (3.2/8, 15.2 million), ABC (2.0/5, 8 million) and The CW (0.8/2, 1.8 million).

Final Nationals update (2:20 p.m.): As expected, Fox’s “American Idol” wrapped up the night with an 8.1/23. “Fringe” came down to a 4.0/10, giving the network an overall 6.1/16 for the night. ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” bumped up to a 3.3/8, while “Castle” slipped to a 1.6/4. CBS’ “NCIS” came in with a 3.5/10.

Fresh ‘House’ Gives Fox the Win; Fan Frenzy Fails to Goose ‘Chuck’ Ratings

April 28, 2009 11:44 AM

Fox took the lead Monday night over CBS’ comedy block and the season finales of struggling NBC dramas “Chuck” and “Heroes,” while ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” slipped week-over-week.


Fox’s “House” returned to its Monday night slot and scored a 4.5 rating/12 share among adults 18-49 and 11.4 million viewers, according to preliminary Nielsen figures. Last night’s episode was flat from its last original telecast two weeks ago, but it improved on “Bones’” performance last week in the timeslot by 80%. At 9 p.m., “24” (3.4/8, 10.6 million) saw a slight 6% bump over last week.

CBS’ “Two and a Half Men” (4.9/12, 14.1 million) ranked as the top program of the night, even though last night’s episode was down 8% dip from the last original episode two weeks ago. The fresh “Men” lead-in gave “Rules of Engagement” (3.9/10, 11.3 million) a slight 3% bump over last week. In the 8 p.m. hour, new episodes of “The Big Bang Theory” (3.4/10, 9.3 million) and “How I Met Your Mother” (3.7/10, 8.9 million) both posted losses from their most recent original telecasts two weeks ago (down 13% and 10%, respectively). At 10 p.m. “CSI: Miami” (3.3/9, 12 million) was down 11% from its last new episode two weeks ago and posted its lowest original rating ever while still winning the hour.

The season finale of “Chuck” (2.3/6, 6.1 million) was down one-tenth of a point from last week’s final rating but flat in the preliminary numbers, even with increased competition across the board. The show remains on the bubble for a renewal and has become the topic of a feverish fan campaign to ensure a third season. The season finale of “Heroes” (3.0/7, 6.4 million) was similarly down one-tenth of a point from last week, coming in 19% below the show’s season-to-date average. “Medium” (2.2/6, 6.7 million) took a much heftier dip to match its series-low performance.

ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” (4.3/12, 19.1 million) was down 9% compared with last week to its lowest-rated performance episode this season, while “Surviving Suburbia” (2.4/6, 9.9 million) and “Castle” (2.1/6, 8.4 million) both came in flat.

The CW’s “Gossip Girl” (1.0/3, 2 million) and “One Tree Hill” (1.1/3, 2.2 million) both posted losses from last week (23% and 8%, respectively) against strong competition on the other networks. The network averaged a 2.3/6 among women 18-34.

For the night: Fox was first in the demo (3.9/10, 11 million), but ABC led in total viewers (3.2/9, 14 million). CBS followed in second in the demo (3.8/10, 11.3 million), followed by NBC (2.5/7, 6.4 million) and The CW (1.0/3, 2.1 million).

Final Nationals update (2:30 p.m.): NBC’s “Chuck” picked up one-tenth of a point, rising to a 2.4/6, similar to last week. Fox’s “House” was up to a 4.6/13. ABC’s “Surviving Suburbia” (2.2/5) and “Castle” (2.0/5) both dipped a bit after factoring in a slight “Dancing With the Stars” run-over. At the network level, Fox rose to a 4.0/10, while CBS dipped to a 3.7/10.

‘Desperate Housewives’ Wins Slow Sunday; ‘Sit Down’ Drops in 2nd Week

April 27, 2009 11:44 AM

ABC claimed a win Sunday night with its staple “Desperate Housewives,” although most shows across the broadcast networks took some spills, including the new Fox animated series “Sit Down, Shut Up.”

Sit Down, Shut Up

ABC’s “Housewives” scored a 4.7 rating/12 share among adults 18-49 and 13.5 million viewers, according to preliminary Nielsen figures. Last night’s episode dipped 2% from last week and came in 15% below the show’s season-to-date average. “Housewives,” however, still was the No. 1 of the night. “Brothers & Sisters” (3.1/8, 9.4 million) took a 6% dip from last week. At 7 p.m., “America’s Funniest Home Videos” (2.2/8, 7.6 million) remained flat, while “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (2.8/8, 8.7 million) was down 7% from its last original two-hour episode two weeks ago.

Fox kicked off its animation lineup with a repeat of “American Dad,” followed by the 250th episode of “King of the Hill” (1.3/5, 2.9 million). “The Simpsons” (2.9/9, 5.9 million) slipped 7% from last week, while “Sit Down, Shut Up” (1.9/5, 4.2 million) dove a much heftier 17% from its debut episode. “Family Guy” (3.4/9, 6.8 million) also slipped 11% with its “Sit Down” lead-in, followed by an original “American Dad” that came in with a 2.5/6 (5.1 million).

CBS’ “Cold Case” (2.2/5, 10.5 million) came in with its lowest-rated episode since February 2008, down 12% from its last original episode and off 19% from its season-to-date average. (The show remains on the bubble for renewal.) “The Unit” (2.0/5, 8.9 million) also posted a 17% drop from its season-to-date average. At 7 p.m., “60 Minutes” came in with a 1.6/6 and 10.4 million, while “The Amazing Race” (3.1/9, 10.3 million) was up one-tenth of a point over last week.

A two-hour edition of “Dateline” on NBC posted a 1.1/3 (5.1 million), off 31% from its most recent telecast two weeks ago. From 9-11 p.m., “Celebrity Apprentice” (3.0/8, 8.2 million) was down 6% from last week.

The CW aired a repeat of “Jericho” and the film “Four Weddings and a Funeral.”

For the night: ABC led the way (3.2/9, 9.8 million), followed by a tie between CBS (2.2/6, 10 million) and Fox (2.26, 4.5 million), then NBC (2.0/6, 6.7 million) and The CW (0.3/1, 1 million).

May Sweep Starts on Sagging Note as ABC, ‘Grey’s’ Win Night

April 24, 2009 12:21 PM

Network viewership was off across the board Thursday, the first night of the May sweep, with many shows posting their worst performances ever, including 10 p.m. newcomers “Southland” and “Harper’s Island.”

Grey's Anatomy

ABC won the night, with the network’s “Grey’s Anatomy” the No. 1 show, scoring a 4.9 rating/13 share among adults 18-49 and 13.2 million viewers, according to preliminary Nielsen figures. Last night’s episode, the first original in about a month, was off 13% in the demo from that episode and scoring the lowest rating ever for an original. “Grey’s” still provided a solid lead-in for a new “Private Practice,” which scored a 3.4/10 (9.2 million) in the 10 p.m. hour. “Practice” remained flat from its last original episode last month and won its hour against new series “Harper’s Island” and “Southland.” The network aired a “Grey’s” repeat at 8 p.m.

All three original programs on CBS came in with series lows. “Survivor: Tocantins” (3.5/11, 11.4 million) saw the series’ lowest original performance ever, excluding Thanksgiving and clip shows, as did “CSI” (3.6/9, 14.5 million), which posted a 5% decrease from last week. In its third week out, “Harper’s Island” (2.0/6, 7.5 million) continued its downward trend, falling 9% from last week.

Several of the male-skewing shows were affected not only by increased competition from other broadcast networks, but also by NBA basketball coverage on TNT.

On NBC, “My Name Is Earl” (2.2/7, 5.5 million) was flat with last week, while “Parks and Recreation” (2.3/7, 5.2 million) posted an 8% loss from last week. “The Office” (3.7/10, 7.2 million) posted the lowest rating for an original episode in its regular timeslot this season, while “30 Rock” (3.1/5, 6.3 million) slipped 11% from the week before but increased 15% over last year in the same time period. At 10 p.m., “Southland” (2.5/7, 8 million) scored its lowest rating after three weeks, and posted a much bigger loss between its second and third weeks than from first to second (17% vs. 6%).

Fox aired original episodes of “Bones” (2.2/7, 8.2 million) and “Hell’s Kitchen” (3.0/8, 6.8 million), both down from their previous week’s performance (12% and 14%, respectively).

The CW aired new episodes of “Smallville” (1.3/4, 3.1 million) and “Supernatural” (1.1/3, 2.8 million), and both saw decreases from their last original episodes (24% and 27%, respectively). The network averaged a 1.1/3 among women 18-34.

For the night: ABC was first (3.2/9, 9.2 million), followed by CBS (3.1/9, 11.1 million), NBC (2.7/8, 6.7 million), Fox (2.6/7, 7.5 million) and The CW (1.2/3, 2.9 million).

‘Idol’s’ Double-Elimination Episode Is a Winner

April 23, 2009 12:17 PM

Fox’s “American Idol” served up a win with two losers, while The CW’s “America’s Next Top Model” headed to Brazil to match this cycle’s best performance.

America’s Next Top Model

At 9 p.m., a double-elimination edition of Fox’s “American Idol” posted an 8.1/21 (23.3 million), down one-tenth of a point from last week. Year-over-year, last night’s “Idol” was down 6% in the demo, but the series has shown growth in total viewers for the last three weeks compared with the same time period last year (23.6 million vs. 23.3 million). Both “Lie” and “Idol” won their respective time periods.

Fox kicked off the night with a new “Lie to Me,” which scored a 2.3 rating/7 share among adults 18-49 and 7.9 million viewers according to preliminary Nielsen information. Last night’s episode took an 8% dip from the last original episode two weeks ago, and was off 23% from an original “Bones” performance in the hour last week.

The CW’s “America’s Next Top Model” (1.9/6, 4 million) posted a 6% gain over last week’s episode, in addition to bumps in some of the key young female demographics. “Model” finished second in the hour and matched its best rating in the demo for the current cycle. At 9 p.m., “90210” was a repeat, giving the network a 2.2/6 among women 18-34.

CBS’ “The New Adventures of Old Christine” and “Gary Unmarried” were both repeats. An encore of “Criminal Minds” aired at 9 p.m., followed by an original “Minds” at 10 p.m., which posted a 3.5/9 (13.5 million) to improve the hour by 21% over last week’s episode of “CSI: NY.”

ABC’s “The Unusuals” (1.6/4, 5 million) took an 11% dip from last week, but performed on par with Tuesday night’s special telecast in the preliminary numbers (which then dipped to a 1.5/4 in the final ratings). In the 8 p.m. hour, “Scrubs” (1.8/6, 4.7 million) and “Better Off Ted” (1.7/5, 4.2 million) were on par with recent performances, while a “Lost” special recap episode in advance of the show’s 100th episode next week came in with a 2.9/7 (6.6 million).

NBC aired encores of “Law & Order,” followed by “Law & Order: SVU” and another “Law & Order.”

For the night: Fox came out on top (5.2/15, 15.6 million), followed by CBS (2.5/7, 9.6 million), ABC (2.1/6, 5.3 million), NBC (1.5/4, 5.8 million) and The CW (1.2/3, 2.6 million).

‘Idol’ Wins Night With Low-Rated Tuesday Telecast

April 22, 2009 11:08 AM

Fox’s “American Idol” won the night after posting a dip from last week, while ABC’s Tuesday test of “The Unusuals” failed to improve the network’s performance in the 10 p.m. hour.

American Idol

Fox’s “Idol” scored an 8.0 rating/2 share among adults 18-49 and 23.2 million viewers, according to preliminary Nielsen figures. Last night’s episode was down 6% from last week and down 12% from its comparable night last year, scoring its lowest-rated Tuesday performance telecast since August 2002 in the preliminary numbers. (Final National updates from Nielsen have "Idol" at an 8.2/23 in the demo, down only 4% from last week and matching its performance from two weeks ago.)

At 9 p.m., “Fringe” (4.1/10, 10.5 million) held on strongly from last week, posting a 3% increase from last week. Fox had the top two shows of the night.

In the 10 p.m. hour, ABC’s “The Unusuals,” airing on a special night, posted a 1.6/4 (6.3 million). Last night’s episode was down 16% from the show’s season-to-date average on Wednesdays, where it has been following “Lost,” and down 6% from last Tuesday’s “Cupid” performance in the hour. Back-to-back episodes of ABC’s “According to Jim” (1.0/3, 3.7 million and 1.1/3, 3.7 million) were off 17% and 8%, respectively, from their time-period debuts last week. At 9 p.m., a results episode of “Dancing With the Stars” (3.2/8, 14.5 million) took a 9% dip from last week.

On NBC, “The Biggest Loser” (3.8/10, 9.3 million) remained flat from last week to match its best regular performance since Feb. 3. At 10 p.m., a repeat of “Law & Order: SVU” (2.7/7, 7.1 million) was the highest-rated repeat in more than a year.

CBS aired repeats throughout the night, starting with special back-to-back episodes of “The Big Bang Theory” (1.6/5, 6.1 million) and “Two and a Half Men” (1.8/5, 6.8 million), both of which edged out ABC sitcoms in head-to-head competition. “NCIS” (2.8/7, 12.3 million) and “The Mentalist” (2.7/7, 12.3 million) repeats both posted gains (8% and 13%, respectively) over repeats in their regular time periods last week. “Mentalist” tied with NBC’s “SVU” for the top spot in the 10 p.m. hour.

The CW’s “Reaper” (1.0/3, 2.5 million) was up one-tenth of a point over last week, while “90210” (1.1/3, 2.2 million) was down as much. Programming on the network was preempted in some markets due to local sports coverage. The network averaged a 1.4/4 among women 18-34.

For the night: Fox was first (6.0/16, 16.9 million), followed by NBC (3.4/9, 8.6 million), CBS (2.4/6, 10.4 million), ABC (1.9/5, 8.2 million) and The CW (1.0/3, 2.3 million).

Final National Updates (3:30 p.m.): Fox’s “Idol” went up to an 8.2/23 (24 million) in the demo, while “Fringe” dipped to a 3.9/9 (9.9 million). ABC’s second half-hour of “Jim” (1.0/3, 3.4 million) and “The Unusuals” (1.5/4, 5.8 million) both dipped one-tenth or a rating point, as did NBC’s “Loser” (3.7/10, 9.3 million) and “SVU” (2.6/7, 7 million) and The CW’s “Reaper” (0.9/2, 2.1 million) and “90210” (1.0/2, 1.9 million). At the network level, Fox bumped up to a 6.1/16 (17 million) for the night, while The CW slid to a 0.9/2 (2 million).