Audiences tune into 'Idol,' 'Bachelor,' 'Loser'

On a night when the top scripted programs aired in repeats, auds turned out in strong numbers Tuesday for reality programming, led, of course, by Fox’s “American Idol.” ABC also scored with more of “The Bachelor,” and NBC was solid with “The Biggest Loser.”

According to preliminary nationals from Nielsen, Fox’s two-hour edition of “American Idol” averaged an 8.9 rating/23 share in adults 18-49 and 24.2 million viewers overall from 8 to 10 p.m., peaking with a 9.8/24 in the demo at 9 o’clock. Though dominant every half-hour, the music talent show was on the low end of its ratings range.

ABC didn’t do much earlier in the evening with “Homeland Security USA” (1.6/4 in 18-49, 5.7 million viewers overall) and “Scrubs” repeats (1.3/3 in 18-49, 3.4 million viewers overall for its hour) but shot up markedly at 10 p.m. with the final hour of this season’s “The Bachelor” (4.0/11 in 18-49, 10.9 million viewers overall). The special, “After the Final Rose: Part 2,” was down from its highly rated first half the previous night but easily led its hour in key demos and gave ABC its best performance in the timeslot since the “Dancing With the Stars” finale in late November.

NBC’s two-hour “The Biggest Loser” (3.5/9 in 18-49, 9.0 million viewers overall) was on par with its delivery on the comparable night a year ago, even though it faced just one hour of “American Idol” last year. The Peacock then ran second in young adults at 10 o’clock with a repeat of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (2.4/6 in 18-49, 7.0 million viewers overall).

CBS ran second or third in most categories on the night with repeats of crime dramas “NCIS” (2.6/7 in 18-49, 13.7 million viewers overall), “The Mentalist” (2.7/6 in 18-49, 12.8 million viewers overall) and “Without a Trace” (2.3/6 in 18-49, 18.5 million viewers overall).

At CW, the second-season premiere of “Reaper” settled for a 0.9/2 in 18-49 and 2.4 million viewers overall during the 8 o’clock hour. Original episodes of the net’s “90210” debuts in its new 9 o’clock timeslot at the end of the month.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: Fox, 8.9/23; NBC, 3.2/8; CBS, 2.5/6; ABC, 2.3/6; Univision, 1.6/4; CW, 0.7/2.

In total viewers: Fox, 24.2 million; CBS, 12.3 million; NBC, 8.3 million; ABC, 6.6 million; Univision, 3.9 million; CW, 1.8 million.

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