No NBC show has been happier to see the return of “The Voice” than “Chicago Fire,” which perked up to its best numbers in nearly five months behind the music competition on Tuesday. Also of note on the first Tuesday of the month was another solid outing (despite a minor decline) by ABC comedy “Fresh Off the Boat” and below-average scores for the return of the net’s “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD.”
According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, NBC dominated Tuesday in key demos behind another two hours of blind auditions on “The Voice” (4.1 rating/12 share in adults 18-49, 15.3 million viewers overall) and a winning perf by third-year drama “Chicago Fire” (2.2/7 in 18-49, 9.1 million viewers overall).
“Voice” was up 5% in 18-49 from last week’s Tuesday premiere (3.9) while “Chicago” spiked 57% from its prior original last month (1.4) to match the show’s best score since its second episode of the season on Sept. 30. A year ago, with comedies as its lead-in, “The Voice” averaged a 1.8 rating on the reality show’s first Tuesday airing in its spring edition.
NBC also seemed to pick up some older viewers from CBS, whose dramas were in repeat. The Peacock drew its second largest Tuesday audience of the season (13.3 million, behind only the night of the “Voice), with “The Voice” logging its second largest Tuesday audience ever (behind only its May 2013 season finale) and “Chicago Fire” drawing its largest overall crowd since its season premiere last Sept. 23.
Elsewhere, ABC’s “Fresh Off the Boat” (1.7/6 in 18-49, 6.0 million viewers overall) ranked second in 18-49 for the 8 o’clock half-hour, down a tick from last week but another pretty good score for a new show leading off the night. It was followed by the third week of “Repeat After Me” (1.2/4 in 18-49, 4.0 million viewers overall), which was also down a tick.
The spring premiere of “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD” (1.6/5 in 18-49, 4.5 million viewers overall) was a bit below the 1.7 it averaged with its 10 episodes in the fall as well as its fall finale; it had tough competition opposite “The Voice,” though its primary drama competitor (CBS’ “NCIS: New Orleans”) was in repeat. The NBC timeslot competition will lessen in the coming weeks as “Voice” gives way to comedies, and “SHIELD” should also benefit from having a long string of original episodes to close the season.
“Marvel’s Agent Carter,” which filled in for “Agents of SHIELD,” premiered in January to a 1.9 rating and ended up averaging a 1.5 with its eight firstrun episodes.
Closing the night for ABC, rookie drama “Forever” (1.0/3 in 18-49, 4.4 million viewers overall) continues to perform modestly but is doing just enough to stay on the schedule.
At Fox, “Hell’s Kitchen” kicked off its latest edition (1.4/4 in 18-49, 4.1 million viewers overall), down a tick in the demo from its fall premiere in September and up a tenth from its finale in mid-December. It was considerably stronger a year ago, though, with its spring premiere (2.0 rating on a Thursday).
“New Girl” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 2.5 million viewers overall) and “The Mindy Project” (1.0/3 in 18-49, 2.1 million viewers overall) were about average, and may pick up some when NBC moves from “The Voice” to comedies in the 9 o’clock hour starting in two weeks.
CBS aired repeats of its Tuesday regulars “NCIS” (1.2/4 in 18-49, 10.7 million viewers overall), “NCIS: New Orleans” (1.0/3 in 18-49, 8.8 million viewers overall) and “Person of Interest” (0.9/3 in 18-49, 5.5 million viewers overall).
CW was also in repeat mode with “The Flash” (0.4/1 in 18-49, 1.5 million viewers overall) and “Supernatural” (0.3/1 in 18-49, 0.9 million viewers overall).
Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night:NBC, 3.4/11; ABC and Fox, 1.3/4; Univision, 1.1/3; CBS, 1.0/3; Telemundo, 0.6/2; CW, 0.3/1.
In total viewers: NBC, 13.3 million; CBS, 8.4 million; ABC, 4.6 million; Fox, 3.2 million; Univision, 2.9 million; Telemundo, 1.5 million; CW, 1.2 million;