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Reality Check: NBC's 'The Voice' Sinks to Historic Low, Still Better Than Fox's 'Idol' Head-to-Head TVbytheNumbers

Two flagship reality shows suffered their own forms of ratings misery Wednesday night, with NBC’s “The Voice” sinking to a series low in the key 18-49 demo, based on Nielsen overnights, while Fox’s “American Idol” lost to the NBC show in the hour that the two shows went head-to-head.

TVbytheNumbers.com reports that “The Voice” fell to an all-time-low 2.7 average rating in 18-49 for the 8 p.m. hour. “American Idol” registered a 2.5 in the same hour, although the two-hour program grew in its second hour and averaged a 2.8 overall. “Idol” was comfortably ahead of “The Voice” in total viewers, averaging 10.82 million to the NBC show’s 8.77 million.

CBS also had an entry in the 8 p.m. clash of the reality shows, with “Survivor: Caramoan” coming in a close third in the 18-49 demo with a 2.5 average, and placing second in total viewers with 9.33 million.

The top show of the night was a scripted series, ABC’s “Modern Family,” which delivered a 3.1 average rating at 9 p.m. -- a season low. That number wasn’t enough to lift ABC out of fourth place overall, as “The Middle” also registered a season low, a 1.8, slipping two-tenths of a ratings point from last week; “How to Live With Your Parents” fell one-tenth to a 2.0; and “Nashville” joined the network’s downtrend by losing one-tenth and settling for a 1.6.

CBS was up across the board -- the 2.5 for “Survivor” in adults 18-49 represented an uptick of one-tenth from last week, while “Criminal Minds” also nudged up one-tenth to a 2.5 and “CSI” surged three-tenths to a 2.2.

NBC also had a couple of shows move in a positive direction: “Law & Order: SVU” rose a healthy four-tenths of a ratings point from last week to a 1.9 average in 18-49, and “Chicago Fire” inched up one-tenth to a 1.8.

Fox won prime time overall with its 2.8 average in viewers 18-49, finishing ahead of CBS (2.4 average), NBC (2.1) and ABC (1.9). Fox also took a narrow win in total viewers, with its 10.8 million beating CBS’s 9.7 million, NBC’s 7.5 million and ABC’s 6.1 million.