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‘How I Met Your Mother,’ ‘Big Bang’ Help CBS Laugh Its Way to Weekly Win

Net ties NBC for week's lead in 18-49, wins outright in adults 25-54 and total viewers

Football played a big role in lifting CBS to the top of the weekly ratings last week, but the Eye also had a good story to tell with its core slate of entertainment series.

In a week that saw ABC rest “Modern Family,” CBS claimed the top six comedies in adults 18-49 — led by “The Big Bang Theory.”

The Eye has also become the 18-49 leader kicking off weeknights, last week claiming the top-rated 8 o’clock entertainment series on Monday through Friday with a mix of comedy, reality and drama programs.

For a while now, CBS been the leader on Thursday with “Big Bang” and Friday with “Undercover Boss,” and over the past month, “NCIS” has solidified is first-place Tuesday standing in the demo over ABC’s “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD.” “Survivor” has moved solidly ahead of Fox’s wilting “X Factor” on Wednesdays, and last week marked the first time this season that “How I Met Your Mother” beat out NBC’s “The Voice” in Monday’s leadoff half-hour.

CBS tied with NBC for the week’s lead in adults 18-49 while leading outright in adults 25-54. The Eye also won in total viewers by the largest margin for any network this season (2.8 million).

It was a rough week for Fox, meanwhile, as “The X Factor” hit more lows and the net posted its lowest demo rating since the Christmas frame of last year, and its smallest overall audience since the 2011 Christmas week. Only “Sleepy Hollow” did higher than a 2.0 rating in adults 18-49 for the net.

Overall for the week of Nov. 4-10, CBS and NBC averaged a 2.7 rating/8 share in adults 18-49, and were followed by ABC (2.0/6), Fox (1.4/4) and Univision (1.2/3). In adults 25-54, CBS edged out NBC (3.4 to 3.2) and has moved into a tie with the Peacock for the season lead.

And in total viewers, CBS is now in the plus column vs. last year (11.97 million vs. 11.64 million).

CBS had five of the week’s top 10 programs in adults 18-49, including Saturday’s football game between LSU and Alabama (4.1/13 in 18-49, 11.90m), the season’s most-watched primetime college contest. Football also gave CBS a boost on Sunday, as a 45-minute NFL overrun lifted “60 Minutes” (3.1/8 in 18-49, 15.26m); later in the evening, “The Good Wife” hit season highs (1.7/4 in 18-49, 10.26m).

On Monday, “How I Met Your Mother” (3.4/9 in 18-49, 11.75m) spiked 13% week-over-week to beat “The Voice” head-to-head in 18-49 (3.4 to 3.3) and log its best scores since its Sept. 23 season premiere. And the fourth-season premiere of “Mike & Molly” had an OK bow in its new 9 o’clock timeslot (2.6/7 in 18-49, 9.22m), though it dropped off on Monday of the current week.

Rookie Thursday comedies “The Millers” (2.6/7 in 18-49, 10.38m) and “The Crazy Ones” (2.1/6 in 18-49, 8.00m) rose week-to-week, as lead-in “The Big Bang Theory” (4.9/15 in 18-49, 16.89m) was back in original.

Notable on Friday were gains for “Undercover Boss” (1.8/6 in 18-49, 9.22m) and “Blue Bloods” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 10.97m), while “Hawaii Five-0” (1.4/5 in 18-49, 9.51m) was also up and moved ahead of NBC’s “Grimm” in 18-49.

NBC’s tie with CBS for the 18-49 lead means the net has held at least a share of first place for six of seven weeks this season. “Sunday Night Football” was the week’s No. 1 primetime program in both 18-49 (7.8/20) and total viewers (21.09m), and the franchise is at record ratings levels through 10 weeks of the football season.

Among entertainment series, “The Voice” hit a season low on Monday (3.6/9 in 18-49, 11.75m), but it and Tuesday’s expanded two-hour seg (3.4/9 in 18-49, 11.30m) ranked among the week’s top 20 programs.

The best news coming out of this season remains “The Blacklist” (2.9/8 in 18-49, 10.34m), which was down a tick in same-night ratings — opposite the biggest “Monday Night Football” game it has faced to date — but has now grown in L+3 ratings for four straight weeks. Last week’s episode surged 1.95 ratings points in 18-49 (2.86 to 4.81) and set a U.S. television record by adding 5.43 million total viewers (10.337m to 15.764m).

Elsewhere, sophomore “Revolution” has been solid on Wednesday (1.4/4 in 18-49, 5.21m), with last week’s episode hitting a five-week high in L3 (2.3), and Thursday’s first-year comedy “Sean Saves the World” (1.4/4 in 18-49, 4.55m) matched or set series highs in key categories.

Friday’s “Dracula” (0.9/3 in 18-49, 2.96m) dropped for a second straight week following its premiere and placed third in its 10 p.m. timeslot.

At ABC, the CMA Awards looked good on Wednesday (4.7/13 in 18-49, 16.76m), rising more than 20% above last year’s record lows on a Thursday and dominating the night.  Other highlights included Friday’s “Shark Tank” (2.0/7 in 18-49, 7.32m), the night’s top show in 18-49, and Thursday’s “Grey’s Anatomy” (2.7/7 in 18-49, 8.68m) and “Scandal” (2.8/8 in 18-49, 8.68m), were the top series in their timeslots in key demos.

On the downside, “Once Upon a Time in Wonderland” (0.9/3 in 18-49, 3.55m) hit a low in its fourth week, and third-year Sunday drama “Revenge” sagged to a 1.3/3 in 18-49. Also, Tuesday country music special “In the Spotlight” bombed (0.7/2 in 18-49, 3.39m).

Fox’s strongest night was Monday, with “Bones” (2.0/5 in 18-49, 6.97m) and “Sleepy Hollow” (2.5/6 in 18-49, 7.08m) providing the net with big gains from the night a year ago.

And a bright spot on Friday this fall for Fox was “Junior MasterChef” (1.5/5 in 18-49, 4.14m), which wrapped its first season last week by spiking 15% week-to-week and matching its best scores since its premiere.

But “The X Factor” is struggling in its third season, returning to its regular schedule for the first time in a few weeks nd hitting lows on both Wednesday (1.5/4 in 18-49, 4.54m) and Thursday (1.2/4, 3.67m). Its results show Thursday trailed CW’s “The Vampire Diaries” in 18-49 (1.3/4).

CW’s new dramas had a good week, with “The Originals” (0.9/3 in 18-49, 2.03m), “The Tomorrow People” (0.6/2 in 18-49, 1.56m) and “Reign” (0.6/2 in 18-49, 1.56m) all rising in key demos and receiving a back-nine order. “Originals” has been a huge gainer in Live+7 DVR playback, more than doubling its Live+Same day rating in adults 18-34.

On cable, AMC’s “The Walking Dead” (6.2/15 in 18-49, 12.20m) was the No. 2 show of the week in 18-49, and ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” (6.1/17 in 18-49, 16.10m for Bears-Packers) finished third.

(In millions of viewers)

Adults 18-49

CBS             2.7/8
NBC             2.7/8
ABC              2.0/6
Fox               1.4/4
UNI              1.2/3
CW               0.7/2
TEL               0.5/2

Total Viewers

CBS           11.35 million
NBC            8.54 million
ABC             7.90 million
Fox              3.83 million
UNI             3.17 million
CW              1.63 million
TEL             1.32 million

(Live plus same-day)

Adults 18-49
1.  Sunday Night Football (NBC), 7.8/20
2.  The Walking Dead (AMC), 6.2/15
3.  Monday Night Football (ESPN), 6.1/17
4.  The Big Bang Theory (CBS), 4.9/15
5.  47th Annual CMA Awards (CBS), 4.7/13
6.  College football: LSU-Alabama (CBS), 4.1/13
7.  The Voice-Monday (NBC), 3.6/9
8.  How I Met Your Mother (CBS), 3.4/9
8.  The Voice-Tuesday (NBC), 3.4/9
10.  60 Minutes (CBS), 3.1/8
11. The Blacklist (NBC), 2.9/8
11.  NCIS (CBS), 2.9/8
13.  Scandal (ABC), 2.8/8
14.  Grey’s Anatomy (ABC), 2.7/7
15.  Mike & Molly (CBS), 2.6/7
15.  The Millers (CBS), 2.6/7
15.  2 Broke Girls (CBS), 2.6/7
18.  The Voice special-Thursday (NBC), 2.5/7
18.  Survivor (CBS), 2.5/7
18.  Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD (ABC), 2.5/7
18.  Sleepy Hollow (Fox), 2.5/6

Total Viewers (in millions)
1.  Sunday Night Football (NBC), 21.09
2.  NCIS (CBS), 19.18
3.  The Big Bang Theory (CBS), 16.89
4.  47th Annual CMA Awards (ABC), 16.76
5.  Monday Night Football (ESPN), 16.10
6.  60 Minutes (CBS), 15.26
7.  NCIS: Los Angeles (CBS), 14.76
8.  Dancing With the Stars (ABC), 13.72
9.  The Walking Dead (AMC), 12.20
10.  College football: LSU-Alabama (CBS), 11.90
11.  Person of Interest (CBS), 11.79
12.  The Voice-Monday (NBC), 11.75
13.  The Voice-Tuesday (NBC), 11.30
14.  Blue Bloods (CBS), 10.97
15.  Castle (ABC), 10.87
16.  The Millers (CBS), 10.38
17.  The Blacklist (NBC), 10.34
18.  The Good Wife (CBS), 10.26
19.  The Voice special-Thursday (NBC), 9.74
20.  Criminal Minds (CBS), 9.70

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