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‘American Idol’ rolls to victory

Fox powerhouse dominates Tuesday with two-hour show

Fox’s “American Idol,” expanded to two hours once again, dominated the ratings landscape on Tuesday, a night that saw below-average scores elsewhere. ABC’s “Lost” and CBS’ “NCIS” were the night’s top scripted series in various categories.

According to preliminary nationals from Nielsen, a performance by the final 12 singers on “American Idol” produced a potent two-hour average of an 8.0 rating/22 share in adults 18-49 and 22.6 million viewers overall, peaking with an 8.6 demo rating and more than 24 million viewers overall. “Idol” was on par with the same night a year ago, and nearly matched the combined 18-49 delivery of ABC, CBS and NBC in the time period (8.0 vs. 8.5).

CBS ran second on the night with its sturdy drama trio of “NCIS” (3.4/10 in 18-49, 17.6 million viewers overall), “NCIS: Los Angeles” (3.2/8 in 18-49, 15.0 million viewers overall) and “The Good Wife” (2.7/8 in 18-49, 13.4 million viewers overall). “NCIS” was the night’s top scripted program in both adults 25-54 and total viewers and was up year to year, while “NCIS: Los Angeles” was on par with last year’s “The Mentalist” in the timeslot, and “Good Wife” reps an improvement over last year’s “Without a Trace.”

ABC again performed well with “Lost” in the middle hour (3.8/10 in 18-49, 8.8 million viewers overall) — Tuesday’s top scripted series in 18-49 — but did little on either side of it. A “Lost” repeat settled for a 1.2/4 in 18-49 and 3.9 million viewers overall at 8 p.m., and a recap of soon-to-return freshman drama “FlashForward” wasn’t much of a ratings factor at 10 p.m. (1.6/4 in 18-49, 4.3 million viewers overall). The Alphabet net does figure to fare better on the night in coming weeks, when the “Dancing With the Stars” results show kicks off the night, and returning drama “V” caps it.

NBC hung in there with its two-hour “The Biggest Loser” (2.7/8 in 18-49, 7.2 million viewers overall), though it was down about 15% year to year. The weight-loss show as usual built with each half-hour and closed with a solid 3.3 demo rating at 9:30 p.m., but 10 p.m. drama “Parenthood” declined for a second straight week (2.3/7 in 18-49, 5.9 million viewers overall), placing second in most categories.

CW continues to put up tiny numbers with “90210” (0.9/3 in 18-49, 1.9 million viewers overall) and “Melrose Place” (0.6/2 in 18-49, 1.2 million viewers overall), though both edged up week to week.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: Fox, 8.0/22; CBS, 3.1/9; NBC, 2.6/7; ABC, 2.2/6; Univision, 1.4/4; CW, 0.7/2.

In total viewers: Fox, 22.6 million; CBS, 15.4 million; NBC, 6.8 million; ABC, 5.7 million; Univision, 3.3 million; CW, 1.5 million.

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