There were no casualties in Wednesday’s titanic tussle between Fox’s “American Idol” and ABC’s “Lost” — well, except for the competition.
Two of television’s biggest hits co-existed nicely in the opening hour of primetime Wednesday, impressively combining for 45% of the available young-adult audience.
According to Nielsen, Fox’s “Idol” was the easy winner (11.2 rating/27 share in adults 18-49, 26.71 million viewers overall) over “Lost” (7.4/18, 19.69m), although the latter skein — the best-performing 8 o’clock drama on any net in nearly a decade — was down only slightly from its recent series-high levels.
For its part, “Idol” was off from its first Wednesday perf of a year ago (12.7/32, 29.4m), but its delivery was impressive opposite competish as tough as it likely will see all season. For its first week, the music talent show is up slightly vs. last season in both adults 18-49 and total viewers.
Hit especially hard Wednesday by “Idol’s” invasion were two other 8 p.m. unscripted skeins: UPN’s “Road to Stardom With Missy Elliott” (1.0/2 in 18-49, 2.31m) and NBC’s “Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model Search” (1.5/4, 3.88m). Latter delivered the Peacock’s lowest in-season 18-49 score in the hour in more than 10 years.
Leading out of “Idol” on Fox was a special preview seg of spooky sudser “Point Pleasant” (5.3/12 in 18-49, 11.32m), which was a solid second for the 9 o’clock hour in key demos to ABC’s “Alias” (5.6/13, 13.21m). “Pleasant” moved into its regular 9 p.m. slot Thursday following “The OC.”
“Alias” has won its hour in 18-49 and total viewers in each of its first three tries this season, but must now brace for the timeslot premiere next week of “American Idol,” which will air in either half-hour or hourlong segs in Wednesday’s 9 o’clock hour.
“King of Queens” was a standout for CBS (4.5/11 in 18-49, 12.12m).
In nationals on the cable side, MTV’s little-hyped “My Super Sweet 16” premiered to a staggering 5.9 million viewers Tuesday, nabbing the highest 12-34 rating in the music net’s history. Program, produced by MTV’s news and docs department, offers a look at a variety of over-the-top birthday bashes. The 10:30 p.m. episode topped all 12-34 cable competish in the time period.
And the second episode of Bravo’s “Queer Eye for the Straight Girl” took a nosedive Wednesday, losing 48% of its week-earlier premiere audience (497,000 vs. 957,000).
(Denise Martin contributed to this report.)