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‘Idol,’ ‘SVU’ top Tuesday

Morning Ratings Flash - Rick Kissell

Fox scored a routine victory in key demo categories Tuesday behind another powerful perf by “American Idol,” according to preliminary nationals from Nielsen. NBC then took over, capping the night with a season-high result from “Law & Order: SVU.”

From 8 to 9, “American Idol” (10.8/28 in adults 18-49, 24.8 million viewers overall) again beat its combined ABC-CBS-NBC competish in adults 18-49 and was up about 10% from the same night a year ago. Fox settled for a second-place tie from 9 to 10 with “24” (4.4/11 in adults 18-49, 10.5 million viewers), which was down about 25% from last season.

NBC hung tough with a 90-minute “Fear Factor” that climaxed with a slot-leading 5.3/13 in adults 18-49 in the 9 o’clock half-hour. Net’s “Scrubs” (4.3/10 in adults 18-49, 8.5 million viewers) squeaked out a demo victory at 9:30, and then “Law & Order: SVU” cleaned up at 10 by matching its second-highest 18-49 rating ever (6.2/16, 14.3 million viewers overall).

ABC’s comedies were sluggish from 8 to 9 but picked up in the 9 o’clock hour with “According to Jim” (4.7/11 in adults 18-49, 11.2 million viewers) and “Less Than Perfect” (4.1/10 in adults 18-49, 9.5 million viewers). And at 10, “NYPD Blue” (3.5/9 in adults 18-49, 9.5 million viewers) was overwhelmed by its Gotham crime foe “SVU.”

At CBS, “Navy NCIS” (2.9/7 in adults 18-49, 13.5 million viewers) ran second in both adults 25-54 and total viewers and was up vs. “JAG” a year ago. Also, “The Guardian” (2.8/7 in adults 18-49, 11.4 million viewers) and “Judging Amy” (3.2/8 in adults 18-49, 12.4 million viewers) looked healthier, both up 2 shares week-to-week in 18-49.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: Fox, 7.6/19; NBC, 5.0/13; ABC, 3.4/9; CBS, 3.0/7; UPN, 2.3/6; WB, 1.9/5.

In total viewers: Fox, 17.7 million; CBS, 12.4 million; NBC, 11.3 million; ABC, 9.1 million; UPN, 5.2 million; WB, 4.8 million.

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