Fox's 'The Following' Finishes First Season

It hits a 7-week high and is in position to finish as the season's No. 1 new program in 18-49

Fox drama “The Following,” perhaps the most impressive of this season’s rookie class in the young-adults demo, closed its season on an uptick Monday, ranking second to NBC’s “The Voice” in its timeslot and standing as the night’s top drama.

NBC easily won the night in key demo categories even though “The Voice” posted its lowest Monday scores of the current cycle and “Revolutionmatched its low.  ABC rolled in total viewers with “Dancing With the Stars” and “Castle.”

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, “The Following” averaged a 2.6 rating/7 share in adults 18-49 and 7.8 million viewers overall, rising 8% week to week for a seven-week high and beating out original episodes of the CBS comedies for the first time. The Kevin Bacon-fronted drama, an especially strong performer in DVR playback, is the season’s No. 2 new program among adults 18-49 — behind NBC’s “Revolution” — but could catch or edge it out it in the coming weeks as the Peacock program wraps.

Also for Fox, “Bones” (2.1/6 in 18-49, 7.1 million viewers overall) was up a tick in its finale, placing third in the 8 o’clock hour in most categories. It edged out “Castle” and “Revolution” as Monday’s No. 2 drama in 18-49.

Elsewhere, NBC’s “The Voice” (4.1/11 in 18-49, 12.5 million viewers overall) came back to earth some, falling about 15% from last week but easily Monday’s No. 1 program in 18-49 and 25-54 (5.2/13); despite the declines, it was still about 20% above its result for the opening Monday of last year’s May sweep. It was followed by “Revolution” (2.0/5 in 18-49, 5.8 million viewers overall), which matched its previous lowest score of last week.

At CBS, “How I Met Your Mother” (2.7/8 in 18-49, 6.9 million viewers overall) was the net’s top program among young adults and matched its most recent original, and “Rules of Engagement” (2.0/6 in 18-49, 6.0 million viewers overall) was up from last week when it followed a “Mother” repeat. In the 9 o’clock hour, “2 Broke Girls” (2.5/6 in 18-49, 7.7 million viewers overall) and “Mike & Molly” (2.3/6 in 18-49, 7.9 million viewers overall) were both up a tick from their most recent originals, but “Hawaii Five-o” (1.7/5 in 18-49, 7.7 million viewers overall) was low.

ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” (2.0/6 in 18-49, 13.3 million viewers overall) was nearly in line with last week, closing the demo gap with “The Voice” and moving back ahead of it in total viewers. And at 10, “Castle” (2.0/5 in 18-49, 10.6 million viewers overall) was down from last week’s 2.3 in the demo when it faced a repeat “Hawaii Five-0.”

There wasn’t much happening at CW, where “Oh Sit” (0.3/1 in 18-49, 0.8 million viewers overall) and “90210″ (0.2/1 in 18-49, 0.5 million viewers overall) combined to average just 700,000 viewers.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: NBC, 3.4/9; Fox, 2.3/6; CBS, 2.1/6; ABC, 2.0/6; Univision, 1.4/4; CW, 0.3/1.

In total viewers: ABC, 12.4 million; NBC, 10.2 million; Fox, 7.4 million; CBS, 7.3 million; Univision, 3.5 million; cw, 0.7 million.

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