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‘Idol’ unbridled winner for Fox in timeslot

Skein doing well in key ratings categories

HOLLYWOOD — Fox’s “American Idol” is picking up ratings steam as it approaches the halfway point of its summerlong competition.

Tuesday’s special 90-minute installment, in which the number of contestants was pared from 10 to eight, matched the series’ high in adults 18-49 (5.3/17) — winning its time period by a commanding 8 shares. It also prevailed in every other key ratings category, including total viewers (10.28 million), according to Nielsen.

Show continues to perform best among adults 18-34, as its 21 share bested runner-up ABC from 8:30 to 10 by 12 shares.

Fox won the night by all key measures, with its victory in adults 18-49 its sixth straight on Tuesdays since the series premiered.

“Idol,” the summer’s highest-rated unscripted series in all key demos, runs until early September.

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