Eye’s holiday cheer

Seasonal toons prove to be boon for ratings

CBS made it seven demo victories in 11 weeks this season behind its strong regular sked and some nice boosts from seasonal friends Rudolph and Frosty.

The red-hot Eye, coming off an impressive November sweep triumph in key demos and total viewers, captured the Nov. 29-Dec. 5 sesh in adults 18-49, adults 25-54 and total viewers, according to Nielsen, and is a comfortable leader for the season in each category as well.

Its 4.1 rating/11 share in the prized adults 18-49 demo bested NBC (3.9/10) and ABC (3.7/10) and was well in front of a struggling Fox (2.9/8).

CBS also claimed victory for the sweep, which ended last Wednesday, among upscale viewers 25-54, moving ahead of NBC in the $75,000-plus category and tying the Peacock for the lead among $150,000-plus. NBC remained on top in all of Nielsen’s upscale 18-49 categories.

Last week for CBS, “CSI: Miami” (8.6/20 in 18-49, 22.71 million viewers overall) hit season highs and stood as the week’s top-rated program in key demos. It capped another big Monday for the net as “Everybody Loves Raymond” (6.4/15 in 18-49, 18.71m) achieved fall highs as well.

Also hitting season highs were Wednesday’s “King of Queens” and Tuesday’s “Amazing Race 6,” “Judging Amy” and “NCIS” — with the latter soph skein establishing series-best scores (3.9/10 in 18-49, 15.65m).

The 40th annual telecast of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” shined brightly Wednesday (5.2/14 in 18-49, 14.93m), ranking in the week’s top 15 in 18-49 and standing as the season’s No. 1 broadcast in kids 2-11 (9.3/29). And on Friday, both “Frosty the Snowman” (3.0/11 in 18-49, 10.07m) and “Frosty Returns” (3.0/10, 10.62m) led their time periods.

CBS also got the better of things in Saturday night’s matchup of college football conference championship games: Eye’s SEC game between Auburn and Tennessee (2.2/8 in 18-49, 6.77m) easily beat ABC’s Big 12 blowout victory for Oklahoma over Colorado (1.4/4 in 18-49, 4.62m).

NBC, second in 18-49 and 25-54 and first in 18-34 (3.5/10), was paced by the Thursday tandem of “ER” (8.4/22 in 18-49, 17.67m) and “The Apprentice” (8.1/20 in 18-49, 16.72m), which ranked second and third for the week, respectively, in 18-49. Latter posted its best scores of fall, edging out a repeat of CBS drama “CSI” in 18-49 (8.0/20, 24.67m).

Also for NBC, Tuesday drama “Law & Order: SVU” (6.3/16 in 18-49, 15.30m) wrapped its highest-rated sweep ever with another dominant perf; rookie drama “Medical Investigation” again led its Friday hour (3.4/10 in 18-49, 10.33m); and Sunday’s “The Family Man” produced the highest 18-49 rating for a theatrical film on any net this season (4.0/9, 9.87m).

ABC, like CBS, was up vs. the same week a year ago, thanks to a nice finishing kick Sunday from telepic “Mitch Albom’s The Five People You Meet in Heaven” (6.2/14 in 18-49, 18.61m). Pic stands as the top-rated single-part movie on television in more than 2½ years.

Also clicking for the Alphabet were Wednesday’s “Lost” (5.9/16 in 18-49, 17.15m) and spec “Nick & Jessica’s Family Christmas” (5.1/12, 12.40m), both of which led their slots in 18-49. And Tuesday’s “My Wife and Kids” rang up its best scores in the 8 o’clock half-hour this season (3.5/10, 9.38m).

Fox had another sluggish week, as low-rated “My Big Fat Obnoxious Boss” returned to the sked with a thud on Sunday (1.9/4 in 18-49, 4.05m) and Thursday’s “The OC” hit a season low (third-place 2.8/8 in 18-49, 6.51m). New Tuesday drama “House” is hanging in there despite little lead-in help from “Rebel Billionaire” but remains fourth for its hour (2.5/6 in 18-49, 6.33m).

On the positive side, Monday’s “Trading Spouses” (3.4/9 in 18-49, 8.09m) placed second in demos at 8, leading into the best scores of the season for “The Swan 2” (fourth-place 3.7/8 in 18-49, 8.18m).

The WB edged out UPN for fifth in adults 18-34 (1.6/5 vs. 1.5/4), with both nets up vs. the same frame a year ago.

Frog received powerhouse perfs from “Gilmore Girls” (2.8/7 in 18-49, 6.23m) and “7th Heaven” (2.6/7, 6.88m), which helped compensate for low-rated rookies “Jack & Bobby” (1.0/3, 2.12m) and “The Mountain” (0.6/1, 1.35m).

For UPN, “WWE Smackdown” was solid on Thursday (1.9/5 in 18-49, 5.27m) and first-year Wednesday drama “Kevin Hill” looked solid (1.4/3 in 18-49, 3.06m).

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