ABC’s Wild Ratings Ride: Best-Ever Numbers for ‘Modern Family,’ But ‘Truth’ Hurts

Sep 23, 2010  •  Post A Comment

ABC’s Emmy-winning sitcom “Modern Family” had a splashy return Wednesday night, drawing 12.6 million viewers overall and earning a 5.0 preliminary rating in the 18-49 demo to finish as the night’s top show, TVbytheNumbers.com reported. The numbers were the best ever for the show.

The strongest new show of the night was CBS’s “The Defenders,” with 12.1 million viewers.  But that was off 28% from its lead-in, “Criminal Minds,” with 14.1 million total viewers, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Other new shows debuted to disappointing numbers, notably ABC’s new Jerry Bruckheimer series “The Whole Truth,” with 4.9 million viewers.

ABC’s “Better With You,” airing at 8:30 p.m., managed to attract 8.0 million viewers.

Hour by hour, at 8 p.m. CBS’s "Survivor: Nicaragua" was the top show in the 18-49 demo with a 4.0 rating. The first hour of Fox’s season premiere of "Hell’s Kitchen" tied with ABC’s season premiere of "The Middle" at 2.6 in the 18-19 demo, followed by “Undercovers” on NBC. NBC’s new J.J. Abrams spy show “Undercoversdrew 8.6 million viewers and a 2.0 in the 18-49 demo.CW’s "America’s Next Top Model" scurried up a 1.3 rating in the 18-49 demo.

At 9 p.m. the season premiere of "Modern Family" led the way, followed by "Criminal Minds" and the second hour of "Hell’s Kitchen," which had a 3.2 demo rating. NBC’s first hour of the season premiere of "Law & Order: SVU" netted a 2.9 in the 18-49 demo, while CW’s "Hellcats" collected a 1.0. At 9:30, ABC’s season premiere of "Cougar Town" with Jennifer Aniston guesting scored a 3.3 in the 18-49 demo.

At 10 p.m. the second hour of "Law and Order: SVU" was tops with a 3.5 in the 18-49 demographic, besting the new shows "The Defenders" on CBS and "The Whole Truth" on ABC.

CBS won the night overall, followed by Fox in second place with ABC and NBC tied for third.


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