‘Idol,’ ‘Bachelor’ top Wednesday

Morning Ratings Flash - Rick Kissell

An expanded edition of “American Idol” made Fox an easy primetime ratings winner Wednesday but ABC had a solid night as well behind the best numbers to date for the current edition of “The Bachelor,” according to preliminary nationals from Nielsen.

“Idol,” which ran from 8:54 to 10 p.m., averaged a projected 10.1 rating/25 share in adults 18-49 and 22.4 million viewers overall to dominate its time period in all key categories. Net also led at 8 with laffer “That ’70s Show” (5.0/16 in adults 18-49, 9.9 million viewers overall).

Over at ABC, which had its strongest Wednesday in 10 weeks, “The Bachelor” hit season highs with a 10 o’clock episode (first-place 6.1/16 in adults 18-49, 12.7 million viewers overall). Net also held its own at 8 with “My Wife and Kids” (3.2/10 in adults 18-49, 8.8 million viewers overall) and at 9 with spec “The Bachelor: The Women Tell All” (4.2/10 in adults 18-49, 9.5 million viewers overall).

CBS did OK but nothing special with its 10 o’clock spec “The Carol Burnett Show: Let’s Bump Up the Lights” (3.5/9 in adults 18-49, 13.5 million viewers overall), which faced tough competish from “The Bachelor” and NBC’s “Law & Order” (5.5/14 in adults 18-49, 15.6 million viewers overall). And NBC fizzled with its 8 o’clock spec “The Mentalist” (2.1/6 in adults 18-49, 6.2 million viewers overall).

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: Fox, 8.1/22; ABC, 4.6/12; NBC, 3.7/10; CBS, 3.2/8; WB, 2.1/6; UPN, 1.0/3.

In total viewers: Fox, 17.4 million; CBS, 11.1 million; NBC, 10.8 million; ABC, 10.4 million; WB, 4.3 million; UPN, 2.4 million.

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