Morning Ratings Flash - Rick Kissell

Wednesday was another good night for reality series, as the latest edition of “The Bachelorette” kicked off with winning ratings on ABC and the finale of Fox’s “The Simple Life” controlled its timeslot as well, according to preliminary nationals from Nielsen. ABC and Fox tied for the night’s lead in 18-49.

From 9 to 10, “The Bachelorette” (5.6/13 in adults 18-49, 12.4 million viewers overall) led its hour in 18-49 although it was down from last year’s big 8.4/20. ABC also did better this week at 10 with “Celebrity Mole: Yucatan” (4.5/12 in adults 18-49, 9.2 million viewers), which led its hour in adults 18-34 (4.6/14).

At Fox, “Simple Life” dominated the 8:30 half-hour (5.5/14 in adults 18-49, 11.0 million viewers), and “That ’70s Show” was the top demo draw at 8 (4.6/13 in adults 18-49, 9.1 million viewers). “The OC” closed out the night for Fox with a 4.0/10 in adults 18-49 and 8.9 million viewers overall, tying the CBS comedies for second in 18-49.

NBC was led as usual by “Law & Order” (5.3/14 in adults 18-49, 17.2 million viewers), while a repeat of the first episode of “The Apprentice” did OK at 8 (3.4/9 in adults 18-49, 9.1 million viewers). At 9, “West Wing” (3.7/9 in adults 18-49, 12.2 million viewers) fell back to fourth for its hour in 18-49.

“King of Queens” led the way for CBS (4.5/11 in adults 18-49, 12.8 million viewers).

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: ABC, 4.5/12; Fox, 4.5/11; NBC, 4.2/11; CBS, 3.5/9; WB, 2.0/5; UPN, 1.5/4.

In total viewers: NBC, 12.8 million; CBS, 11.8 million; ABC, 10.1 million; Fox, 9.5 million; WB, 5.1 million; UPN, 3.6 million.

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