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‘Idol,’ ‘Family’ set Wednesday pace

NBC's 'Rock Center' debut on night soft, but 'SVU' rises

Fox’s ”American Idol” ruled as Wednesday’s top-rated program, teaming with a solid showing by ”Mobbed” to lift the net to victory. ABC’s ”Modern Family” was the top-rated scripted series in demos, and NBC’s ”Law and Order: SVU” had its best showing in a while.

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, ”American Idol” (6.0 rating/17 share in adults 18-49, 18.9 million viewers overall) continues to track well below last year’s pace but was up in some categories week to week and still beat its combined ABC-CBS-NBC competition for the 8 o’clock hour in 18-49. It was followed by ”Mobbed” (3.0/8 in 18-49, 8.8 million viewers overall), which was up a bit from last week despite facing tougher competition this time around and placed third for its hour.

ABC’s ”Modern Family” (5.5/14 in 18-49, 12.9 million viewers overall) was up nearly 10% from its last original episode three weeks ago (opposite the ”American Idol” season premiere) and stood as the night’s No. 1 program in adults 18-34 (4.8/14 to 4.4/14 for ”American Idol”). ”The Middle” (2.6/8 in 18-49, 8.5 million viewers overall) and ”Suburgatory” (2.5/7 in 18-49, 7.3 million viewers overall) placed second to ”Idol” in the opening hour, and ”Happy Endings” was in line with its most recent delivery at 9:30. Closing out the night, rookie drama ”Revenge” (2.5/7 in 18-49, 7.6 million viewers overall) ran second in its timeslot, on par with its most recent original.

CBS started sluggishly with interview special ”Person to Person” (1.1/3 in 18-49, 6.0 million viewers overall) before surging at 9 with ”Criminal Minds” (3.4/9 in 18-49, 13.6 million viewers overall) and then moving to the timeslot lead at 10 with ”CSI” (2.7/7 in 18-49, 11.4 million viewers overall). Though down from two weeks ago when the exit of Marg Helgenberger produced season highs for the show, ”CSI” still ruled its hour in demos and total viewers. (Note that due to a preemption on the CBS station in Charlotte for North Carolina-Duke college basketball, numbers for the net’s dramas could be affected slightly.)

And NBC saw the return of original ABC comedies in the 8 o’clock hour result in lower scores than last week for its rookie half-hours ”Whitney” (1.5/4 in 18-49, 4.1 million viewers overall) and ”Are You There, Chelsea?” (1.5/4 in 18-49, 3.7 million viewers overall). The timeslot debut of ”Rock Center with Brian Williams” settled for a 1.1/3 in 18-49 and 5.3 million viewers overall at 9 o’clock, but ”Law and Order: SVU” doubled its lead-in (2.2/6 in 18-49, 6.7 million viewers overall) with its best score since Nov. 30.

CW aired ”One Tree Hill” (0.7/2 in 18-49, 1.3 million viewers overall) and ”Remodeled” (0.4/1 in 18-49, 0.7 million viewers overall).

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: Fox, 4.5/12; ABC, 3.1/8; CBS, 2.4/6; NBC, 1.6/4; Univision, 1.5/4; CW, 0.5/1.

In total viewers: Fox, 13.9 million; CBS, 10.4 million; ABC, 8.4 million; NBC, 5.3 million; Univision, 3.9 million; CW, 3.6 million.

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