Morning Ratings Flash - Rick Kissell

NBC eked out a young-adults demo victory on Sunday on the strength of another strong perf in the night’s final hour by “Crossing Jordan,” according to preliminary nationals from Nielsen.

“Crossing Jordan” (5.1/13 in adults 18-49, 13.6 million viewers overall) led from 10 to 11 in all key ratings categories, again building in demos on its strong lead-in from “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” (4.6/11 in adults 18-49, 13.8 million viewers overall). NBC was also competitive in the 8 o’clock hour with a special “Dateline” (3.1/9 in adults 18-49, 9.3 million viewers overall).

Fox did well from 7 to 9 with its comedies, with a firstrun seg of “King of the Hill” winning in demos at 7:30 (3.0/10 in adults 18-49, 6.4 million viewers overall) and an original “The Simpsons” prevailing at 8 (4.3/13 in adults 18-49, 9.1 million viewers overall). At 9, “24” – airing on a special night and facing much tougher drama competish than on Tuesday – settled for a third-place finish among broadcasters (3.1/7 in adults 18-49, 6.9 million viewers overall).

ABC was a solid second among adults 18-49 in the night’s first three hours thanks to “America’s Funniest Home Videos” (2.5/9 in adults 18-49, 8.0 million viewers overall), “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (3.7/10 in adults 18-49, 9.8 million viewers overall) and “Alias” (3.7/9 in adults 18-49, 8.5 million viewers overall). At 10, “The Practice” (3.0/8 in adults 18-49, 8.8 million viewers overall) was well behind “Crossing Jordan.”

CBS was led by the network premiere of “Along Came a Spider” (2.8/7 in adults 18-49, 9.9 million viewers overall). From 8 to 9, “Cold Case” led in total viewers (12.9 million) despite a fourth-place 18-49 finish (2.7/8).

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: NBC, 3.6/10; Fox, 3.4/10; ABC, 3.2/9; CBS, 2.6/7; WB, 1.3/4.

In total viewers: CBS, 10.9 million; NBC, 10.8 million; ABC, 8.8 million; Fox, 7.3 million; WB, 2.8 million.

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