‘Rudolph,’ ‘Victoria’ lift CBS on Tuesday

Specials down from last year, but lead net to ratings victory

In what’s becoming a December tradition, the unlikely combo of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and the “Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show” lifted CBS to ratings victory on Tuesday despite steep year-to-year declines. NBC ran second behind “The Voice,” which again led its hour, and rookie comedy “Go On.”

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” (2.9 rating/8 share in adults 18-49, 10.1 million viewers overall) ran second in the 8 o’clock hour in most categories but was down 27% from last year’s 4.0 rating; of course, it dominated among kids 2-11 (4.8/15). A special 9 p.m. repeat of “NCIS” (2.0/5 in 18-49, 11.1 million viewers overall) was competitive with original programming on other nets in 18-49 while winning the hour in adults 25-54 (2.8/7) and total viewers. And at 10, “Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show” dominated its broadcast competition and was the night’s top show in 18-49 (3.5/10 in 18-49, 9.3 million viewers overall) despite declines of more than 20% from its all-time highs set last year.

For the night, CBS won in 18-49, 25-54 and total viewers.

At NBC, “The Voice” (3.4/10 in 18-49, 11.3 million viewers overall) was a close second to “Victoria’s Secret” on the night in 18-49 and led its hour in most categories, but was off a bit from last week. Holding steady though, were 9 o’clock hour comedies “Go On” (2.5/7 in 18-49, 6.9 million viewers overall) and “New Normal” (1.7/4 in 18-49, 4.6 million viewers overall), with the former leading its timeslot in 18-49 and matching its highest rating in eight weeks. At 10, “Parenthood” was down slightly (1.7/5 in 18-49, 4.9 million viewers overall) — not surprising given the tougher than usual competition in the hour from CBS.

Fox’s comedies all dropped from last week: “Raising Hope” (1.4/4 in 18-49, 3.7 million viewers overall), “Ben & Kate” (1.1/3 in 18-49, 2.7 million viewers overall), “New Girl” (2.0/5 in 18-49, 4.1 million viewers overall) and “The Mindy Project” (1.3/3 in 18-49, 2.6 million viewers overall). “New Girl” remained the night’s top-rated comedy in adults 18-34 (2.2/7).

ABC did OK, especially given the tough competition, with a special Christmas-themed episode of Friday unscripted series “Shark Tank” at 8 (1.7/5 in 18-49, 6.9 million viewers overall). From there, “Happy Endings” (1.3/3 in 18-49, 3.5 million viewers overall) and “Don’t Trust the B in Apt. 23” (1.2/3 in 18-49, 3.0 million viewers overall) improved upon their low scores of two weeks ago, and 10 p.m. drama “Private Practice” was down a tick (1.2/3 in 18-49, 4.4 million viewers overall) opposite a stronger CBS in the hour.

CW’s “Hart of Dixie” (0.6/2 in 18-49, 1.7 million viewers overall) and “Emily Owens, M.D.” (0.4/1 in 18-49, 1.6 million viewers overall) both rose week to week.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: CBS, 2.8/8; NBC, 2.4/7; Fox, 1.5/4; ABC and Univision, 1.4/4; CW, 0.5/1.

In total viewers: CBS, 10.3 million; NBC, 7.3 million; ABC, 4.8 million; Univision, 3.7 million; Fox, 3.3 million; CW, 1.6 million.

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