CBS spec towers over competish

'9/11' catapults net to front of total viewers race

In the world of primetime ratings last week, there were CBS and NBC … and then there was everybody else.

Thanks in large part to the enormous Sunday aud for its “9/11” special, CBS catapulted to the front of the total viewers race for the second post-Olympics week in a row, averaging 14.5 million viewers compared to NBC’s 12.3 million.

The Eye stayed close to NBC among adults 18-49, but the Peacock took the crown (4.9/13 vs. CBS’ 4.8/13), thanks to strong wins on four nights of the week.

The Olympics apparently left behind a lasting glow for NBC. Year-to-year, the Peacock was up an astounding 45% in adults 18-34, 29% in young adults and 25% in total viewers — even though the net stuck with regular programming last week.

Docu spec “9/11” gave CBS similarly healthy increases: The Eye improved 21% in adults 18-49, 20% in adults 18-49 and 19% in viewers.

Fox posted single-digit declines for the week, taking third place in both viewers (7.7 million, down 9%) and adults 18-49 (3.6/9, down 5%). Beleaguered ABC took another massive hit across the board, limping into fourth place with viewers (7.68 million, down 36%) and adults 18-49 (2.8/7, down 30%).

UPN (3.6 million) and WB (3.3 million) were up slightly in viewers, flat in adults 18-49 (1.5/4 for UPN, 1.4/4 for WB) and down in adults 18-34.

“9/11” was by far the week’s top-rated program by most measurements; “Friends” was top regular series among adults 18-49 (12.4/31), while “CSI” bagged the most viewers (26.7 million) for the week.

Sunday

CBS’ chilling “9/11” doc pulled off the biggest non-sports ratings for any network this season, attracting 39 million viewers and a 16.2 rating/34 share among adults 18-49.

Fox’s “The Simpsons” was the night’s highest-rated regular series (14.5 million viewers, 7.1/17 adults 18-49), while ABC’s “The Practice” was top drama (11.8m, 4.1/9 adults 18-49).

The Lakers and the Knicks did NBC no favors: The NBA game bled almost two hours into primetime, averaging just 4.6 million viewers. The Eye handily won the night, averaging 26.8 million viewers with a 9.6/22 in adults 18-49; Fox was second in both measurements (10m, 5.0/12 adults 18-49).

Saturday

Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do? Apparently, you’re gonna watch Fox. The net’s crimetime lineup of “Cops” and “America’s Most Wanted” won the night with viewers (8.2m) and adults 18-49 (3.2/10).

CBS was hurt by primetime runover from the NCAA Pac-10 championship, which attracted 4.3 million viewers and sunk the Eye’s tally for the night. Over at ABC, viewers lived and let “Live and Let Die” die. The latest installment of the “Bond Picture Show” averaged just 5.5 million viewers and a 1.8/6 in adults 18-49. NBC’s repeat of “Godzilla” didn’t fare much better (6.1m, 2.4/7 adults 18- 49).

Friday

Finally revealed: NBC can credit Satan for its ratings dominance. NBC killed throughout the night, thanks to a strong two-hour “Dateline” (4.3 in adults 18-49) that focused on a satanic cult’s involvement in a Texas murder case.

Not to take away from the dark one, but “Law & Order: SVU” posted its second-best rating ever with adults 18-49 (5.7). NBC handily won the night with total viewers (14.2m), and its young adults tally (4.8 rating) was two and a half ratings points higher than its nearest competitors (ABC and Fox, which tied with a 2.3/7).

CBS, meanwhile, took a hit. Armed with a “JAG” repeat, “First Monday” and “48 Hours,” the Eye web posted its second-lowest Friday viewer numbers this season (5.8m).

ABC was second for the night among viewers (7.5m) with “20/20,” “America’s Funniest Home Videos” and the repeat special “All New Bloopers No. 4.” Which begs the question: If it’s a rerun, are the “Bloopers” truly “All New”?

Thursday

The big “Whose Line Is It Anyway”/”Family Guy” battle is heating up. “Family Guy” won this round, averaging 5.25 million viewers with two repeat episodes, compared to “Whose Line’s” 4.53 million for one repeat and one original seg.

In their common half-hour, “Friends” beat “Survivor: Marquesas” in both viewers (26.3m vs. 21.5m) and adults 18-49 (12.4/31 vs. 8.4/21). But “Survivor’s” hour beat the hour of “Friends” and “Leap of Faith” in viewers (23.4 million vs. 22.5 million). “Friends” and “Leap of Faith” beat “Survivor” in demos (10.6/26 vs. 9.4/23).

“Survivor: Marquesas” already is showing more potential than its predecessor, “Survivor: Africa.” Unlike “Africa,” which saw declines in week two, “Marquesas” was up across the board. Show also dramatically bumps up at 8:30, after viewers are done visiting their “Friends.”

Meanwhile, “WWF Smackdown” pummeled two “Charmed” repeats (5.6 million vs. 2.4 million viewers), not that it matters in the least, since both programs go after completely different audiences. NBC won the night in both total viewers (21.2m to CBS’ 20.4m) and adults 18-49 (10.3/25 to CBS’ 7.6/19).

Wednesday

Viewers continue to chow down on Fox’s “Bernie Mac,” which has quietly become the night’s top-rated laffer among adults 18-49 (5.0/13).

Granted, “Bernie” was up against a repeat “Drew Carey” (3.8/10), while the night’s other comedy bright spot, ABC’s “My Wife and Kids,” also was in repeats last week (4.0/12). “Wife and Kids” was top sitcom for the night with viewers (10.8m).

Meanwhile, NBC’s “Ed” attracted 11.3 million viewers, giving the show its first total viewers win in the 8 p.m. slot since its second-season premiere in October.

As for the night’s record books, ABC’s “Downtown” averaged 5.8 million viewers at 10 p.m. — the worst performance for any regularly scheduled, in-season program in that time period. Ever. At least since the advent of people meters.

Tuesday

Attention, Julia-Louis Dreyfus: First, here’s some good news. Your “Watching Ellie” sitcom improved on its repeat “Frasier” lead-in by 44%, and nicely won the half-hour among adults 18-49 (5.1/13).

Now, have a seat. “Ellie’s” second episode was down 28% from its premiere in adults 18-49 and down 28% with viewers. That’s worse than “The Michael Richards Show’s” week-two retentions (although that show started with a lower rating).

Consolation time: Jason Alexander’s “Bob Patterson” fell faster — and harder — in its second week.

Meanwhile, ABC just can’t catch a break. Despite a TV Guide cover and tons of promotion, Martin Sheen’s guest appearance on “Spin City” marked the show’s lowest-ever adults 18-49 rating for an original episode (3.1/8). Ditto the fast-fading “Dharma & Greg,” which also posted record lows in the demo for a firstrun seg (2.6/7).

Over at the weblets, UPN’s “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” (5.6 million) beat WB’s “Gilmore Girls” (4.2 million) for the first time since January — but “Gilmore” was in repeats. At 9 p.m., UPN viewers shut their TVs off in protest. Newcomer “As If” averaged 1.8 million viewers, while fellow midseason premiere “Random Years” took in just 1.4 million.

Monday

ABC’s “The Chair” was executed last week, and it’s not hard to see why: The final episode averaged 4.9 million viewers, making it the Alphabet web’s lowest-rated program in that hour since at least 1987.

On a brighter note for the Alphabet, its “My Wife and Kids” beat a repeat of “Bernie Mac” (3.2/9 vs. 2.8/8) among adults 18-49. The debut of “Wayne Brady” scored a 3.1/8 in adults 18-49 and 7.2 million viewers. The one-two Damon Wayans/Wayne Brady punch improved ABC’s perf in the time period by 15% with adults 18- 49.

The WB beat ABC and Fox (not to mention UPN) at 8 p.m. with its still-powerful “7th Heaven” (8.3 million, vs. ABC’s 7.7 million and Fox’s 5.9 million).

Also on Monday, “Fear Factor” saw its lowest adults 18-49 number to date (4.7/12). CBS (15.1m viewers, 5.1/13 adults 18-49) took control of the night; NBC was second (12.1m viewers, 4.9/12 adults 18-49).

More TV

  • Nick Stoller

    Nick Stoller Inks Multi-Year Overall Deal With Sony Pictures Television

    In the world of primetime ratings last week, there were CBS and NBC … and then there was everybody else. Thanks in large part to the enormous Sunday aud for its “9/11” special, CBS catapulted to the front of the total viewers race for the second post-Olympics week in a row, averaging 14.5 million viewers […]

  • CW - EA MADDEN NFL 18

    CW, EA Team on 'Madden NFL 18' eSports 'Survivor'-Style Special for TV

    In the world of primetime ratings last week, there were CBS and NBC … and then there was everybody else. Thanks in large part to the enormous Sunday aud for its “9/11” special, CBS catapulted to the front of the total viewers race for the second post-Olympics week in a row, averaging 14.5 million viewers […]

  • Facebook - tv academy emmys 2017

    70th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards Date Announced

    In the world of primetime ratings last week, there were CBS and NBC … and then there was everybody else. Thanks in large part to the enormous Sunday aud for its “9/11” special, CBS catapulted to the front of the total viewers race for the second post-Olympics week in a row, averaging 14.5 million viewers […]

  • Homeland Season 6 finale

    'Homeland' Season 7 Sets Premiere Date, Drops First Trailer

    In the world of primetime ratings last week, there were CBS and NBC … and then there was everybody else. Thanks in large part to the enormous Sunday aud for its “9/11” special, CBS catapulted to the front of the total viewers race for the second post-Olympics week in a row, averaging 14.5 million viewers […]

  • Chris Hardwick David X Cohen

    Chris Hardwick, David X. Cohen Team for Museum Comedy in Development at NBC

    In the world of primetime ratings last week, there were CBS and NBC … and then there was everybody else. Thanks in large part to the enormous Sunday aud for its “9/11” special, CBS catapulted to the front of the total viewers race for the second post-Olympics week in a row, averaging 14.5 million viewers […]

  • BETTER LATE THAN NEVER -- "Munich"

    TV Ratings: 'Better Late Than Never' Season 2 Debuts Down Double Digits

    In the world of primetime ratings last week, there were CBS and NBC … and then there was everybody else. Thanks in large part to the enormous Sunday aud for its “9/11” special, CBS catapulted to the front of the total viewers race for the second post-Olympics week in a row, averaging 14.5 million viewers […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content