Reality rules Wednesday

CBS' 'Brother,' NBC's 'Talent,' 'Wild' top timeslots

On a night when Fox’s ”So You Think You Can Dance” posted only so-so numbers for its season’s performance finale, it was CBS’ ”Big Brother” and NBC’s ”America’s Got Talent” that racked up the best scores Wednesday.

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, ”Big Brother” continues to impress this summer, gaining again this week and standing as the evening’s top-rated program in adults 18-49 (2.7/9) and 25-54 (3.2/10) while drawing 7.2 million viewers overall; in all key demos, the show matched or set Wednesday season highs. The Eye then fell off from there as usual with repeats of ”Criminal Minds” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 5.6 million viewers overall) and ”CSI” (1.4/4 in 18-49, 7.2 million viewers overall) but it won the night in adults 25-54 and total viewers.

At Fox, the top four contestants performed on ”So You Think You Can Dance” in advance of tonight’s finale, with the two-hour episode averaging a 1.9/6 in 18-49 and 5.7 million viewers overall , up a bit vs. last week. As it has in recent weeks, Fox won the night in 18-49 even though it didn’t win either of its two hours, as the averages for ABC, CBS and NBC were all dragged down by their lower-rated performances in the 10 o’clock hour.

NBC opened with another soft showing by gameshow ”Minute to Win It” (1.2/4 in 18-49, 4.8 million viewers overall) before rising to the timeslot lead at 9 with ”America’s Got Talent” (2.4/7 in 18-49, 9.3 million viewers overall), which was again on the low side but still topped the night in total viewers. And at 10, the penultimate episode of ”Love in the Wild” (1.5/4 in 18-49, 4.6 million viewers overall) again led its major-network competition in 18-49.

ABC lagged its rivals on the night with repeats of comedies ”The Middle” (0.9/3 in 18-49, 4.2 million viewers overall), ”Modern Family” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 4.5 million viewers overall in a special 8:30 p.m. airing and 1.6/5 in 18-49, 4.8 million at 9 p.m.) and ”Happy Endings” (1.0/3 in 18-49, 3.0 million viewers overall). Closing out the night was ”Primetime Nightline” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 4.2 million viewers overall), an hour from the ABC News department devoted to celebrity secrets.

Univision moved up to a third-place tie with NBC on the night thanks to its friendly soccer match between USA and Mexico, which averaged a 1.7/5 in 18-49 and 3.8 million viewers overall from 8:30 to 11 p.m., with these numbers more tentative than most preliminaries due to the nature of live sports.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: Fox, 1.9/6; CBS, 1.8/5; NBC and Univision, 1.7/5; ABC, 1.3/4; CW, 0.4/1.

In total viewers: CBS, 6.7 million; NBC, 6.3 million; Fox, 5.7 million; ABC, 4.1 million; Univision, 3.7 million; CW, 1.1 million.

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