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Monday Ratings: ‘Blindspot’ Down, ‘Life in Pieces’ Up

UPDATED WITH MONDAY FINALS AND WEEKLY AVERAGES: Two first-year series saw their fortunes turn somewhat on Monday, as NBC’s “Blindspot” took a ratings hit in its fifth week but still remained the night’s top-rated drama in key demos, while CBS’ comedy “Life in Pieces” posted its best score in the four weeks since its series premiere in what is its final Monday airing before moving to Thursdays starting next week.

According to final national “live plus same-day” estimates from Nielsen, NBC remained the broadcast leader in demos for a fifth straight Monday to start the season but its “The Voice” (3.0/9 in 18-49, 11.40 million viewers overall) and “Blindspot” (2.1/7 in 18-49, 7.82 million viewers overall) were down multiple tenths to their season lows. “Blindspot,” which has already been picked up for a full 22-episode first season, is still the fall’s top-rated series in the 18-49 demo and is a particularly big riser in delayed viewing. Its previous same-night low in 18-49 came two weeks ago (2.4).

At CBS, “The Big Bang Theory” (3.9/13 in 18-49, 14.68 million viewers overall) was flat week to week and was again Monday’s No. 1 show in 18-49 as well as total viewers. It was followed by “Life in Pieces” (2.1/6 in 18-49, 8.47 million viewers overall), which posted its first week-over-week increases in 18-49, up 17% (0.3) from last week. Last night’s 54% retention of its “Big Bang Theory” lead-in is up from last week’s 46% and is the best since the show’s Sept. 21 premiere.

“Scorpion” (1.8/5 in 18-49, 9.46 million viewers overall) and “NCIS: Los Angeles” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 8.77 million viewers overall) were also up week to week for CBS. The former had its best score since its season premiere, and the latter hit season highs across the board thanks to a guest appearance by “NCIS” star Michael Wetherly and his character Special Agent Dinozzo.

ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” (1.9/6 in 18-49, 12.50 million viewers overall), without any football pre-emptions this week, was up 0.2 from last week and at its highest level since its pre-season premiere on Sept. 14. This was the show’s most competitive position to “The Voice” this season, trailing the music competition series by 3 shares in 18-49 and 25-54 and by just 2 shares in adults 18-34; it also pulled back ahead of the NBC program in total viewers. Capping the night for ABC was “Castle” (1.1/3 in 18-49, 6.67 million viewers overall), which was steady week to week and remains low.

Fox’s “Gotham” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 4.19 million viewers overall) was down 0.2 to its season low, and “Minority Report” followed with a decline of its own (0.6/2 in 18-49, 1.82 million viewers overall). The 0.6 rating for “Minority” is the lowest for any Big Four original telecast this fall.

ESPN won the night with “Monday Night Football,” as its game between the New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles averaged a 5.2 rating in adults 18-49 and 13.90 million viewers overall. The demo ratinge matches the franchise’s top score since Week 1. The game, whose halftime featured the exclusive debut of the new trailer for Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” averaged a 9.6 overnight household rating, peaking in the second quarter (9:45-10 p.m. ET) with an 11.7 rating.

CW’s “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” (0.3/1 in 18-49, 791,000 viewers overall) and “Jane the Virgin” (0.4/1 in 18-49, 836,000 viewers overall) both held at last week’s premiere 18-49 scores even though last night’s averages don’t include the New York market. The Giants-Eagles game aired on the network’s New York station, WPIX.

Game 3 of baseball’s American League Championship Series between the Kansas City Royals and Toronto Blue Jays averaged a 0.83 rating in 18-49 and 3.09 million viewers overall on cabler FS1.

The top cable entertainment series in 18-49 on Monday were the VH1 combo of “Love & Hip Hop Hollywood” (1.4 rating in 18-49, 2.75 million viewers overall) and “Black Ink Crew” (1.3 rating in 18-49, 2.53 million viewers overall) and Bravo’s “Real Housewives of Orange County” (0.85 rating in 18-49, 2.04 million viewers overall).

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In weekly “live plus same-day” averages for Oct. 12-18, NBC won for a 15th consecutive frame in adults 18-49 to extend the longest winning streak for any network since Fox in 2009. The net averaged a 2.4 rating, followed by CBS (2.1), ABC (1.5), Fox (1.3) and CW (0.6). NBC also edged ahead of the Eye in adults 25-54 (3.0 to 2.9) while CBS led easily in total viewers (10.37 million to 8.35 million for NBC).

NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” was No. 1 for the week with its New England-Indianapolis matchup (8.2 in 18-49, 22.82 million viewers overall), drawing the largest audience for any NFL game up against a baseball League Championship Series in 19 years. Through six weeks of the season, “SNF” is up 6% from last year in 18-49 and 10% higher in total viewers, with its average audience (24.1 million) the best for the primetime broadcast package since ABC’s “Monday Night Football” in 1996.

AMC’s “The Walking Dead” (6.2 in 18-49, 12.20 million viewers overall) and Fox’s “Empire” (4.9 in 18-49, 12.22 million viewers overall) were down but remained easily the week’s top two entertainment series in 18-49. “Walking Dead,” whose falloff of 16% is fairly typical for the second week of a season, may see more of a lift in delayed viewing as it was up against a big “Sunday Night Football” contest as well as the National League Championship Series on TBS.

CBS veterans “NCIS” (16.04 million) and “The Big Bang Theory” (14.96 million) were the week’s most-watched entertainment series overall.

TBS was the No. 1 cable network for the week, scoring well with the opening games of the National League Championship Series between the Chicago Cubs and New York Mets on Saturday (2.3 rating in 18-49, 7.89 million viewers overall) and Sunday (1.9 rating in 18-49, 6.57 million viewers overall).

WEEK’S TOP PRIMETIME SHOWS
(Live plus same-day for Oct. 12-18)

Adults 18-49 rating
1.  Sunday Night Football: New England-Indianapolis (NBC), 8.2
2.  The Walking Dead (AMC), 6.2
3.  Thursday Night Football: Atlanta-New Orleans (CBS/NFLN), 4.9
4.  Empire (Fox), 4.9
5.  The Big Bang Theory (CBS), 3.9
6.  Democratic Debate (CNN), 3.6
7.  The Voice-Monday (NBC), 3.3
8.  Modern Family (ABC), 2.7
9.  The Voice-Tuesday (NBC), 2.6
10.  Blindspot (NBC), 2.5

Total Viewers (in millions)
1.  Sunday Night Football: New England-Indianapolis (NBC), 22.82
2.  NCIS (CBS), 16.04
3.  Democratic Debate (CNN), 15.79
4.  The Big Bang Theory (CBS), 14.96
5.  Thursday Night Football: Atlanta-New Orleans (CBS/NFLN), 14.78
6.  60 Minutes (CBS), 13.79
7.  NCIS: New Orleans (CBS), 12.47
8.  Empire (Fox), 12.22
9.  The Walking Dead (AMC), 12.20
10.  Monday Night Football: Pittsburgh-San Diego (ESPN), 12.18

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