CBS Claims Narrow Win in Sunday Prime as the Other Broadcast Nets Endure a Night of Historic Lows

Apr 14, 2014  •  Post A Comment

CBS had just enough in the tank to win the prime-time ratings battle among the broadcast networks Sunday night, based on Nielsen overnights for the key 18-49 demo. Meanwhile, shows on all three of the other big four networks equaled or surpassed historic lows.

TVbytheNumbers.com reports that ABC finished close behind in second place despite series lows for much of its lineup. "Once Upon a Time" fell 21% from a week ago to register a 1.9 average in 18-49, equaling its worst-ever number. "Revenge" matched its all-time low set last week, a 1.3; and "Resurrection" fell 9% to a series low, a 2.0.

ABC's "America's Funniest Home Videos" was also down, falling 14% to a 1.2 average in the 18-49 demo.

Third-place Fox saw "Cosmos" lose 20% from a week ago, setting a series low with a 1.2 average in viewers 18-49, as the Fox lineup was down across the board from a week ago. "Bob's Burgers" was off 11% with a 0.8 average, "American Dad" fell 8% to a 1.1, "The Simpsons" lost 16% to notch a 1.6, and "Family Guy" slipped 9% to a 2.1 — still the top show of the night on broadcast prime.

NBC's Sunday night had both "American Dream Builders" and "Believe" matching the series lows they set last week — a 0.7 in 18-49 for "Builders" and a 1.0 for "Believe." "Dateline" was off 27% with a 0.8, but "Crisis" bucked the downtrend, rising 10% to a 1.1.

CBS's prime time was delayed 12 minutes due to overrun in the Masters golf tournament, meaning the network's numbers will be subject to more than the usual adjustments. The preliminary results show "60 Minutes" up 38% from a week ago with a 1.8 average in adults 18-49, "The Amazing Race" down 15% from its most recent installment with a 1.7, "The Good Wife" down 17% with a 1.5 and "The Mentalist" scoring a 1.5, the same as its most recent episode.

For prime time overall, CBS averaged a 1.7 in the 18-49 demo to lead ABC (1.6 average), Fox (1.3), NBC (0.9) and Univision (0.7). CBS won handily in total viewers, averaging 9.7 million to finish ahead of ABC (6.0 million), NBC (4.0 million), Fox (3.2 million) and Univision (2.1 million).

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