Fox tops Tuesday with ‘American Idol’

NBC's 'Parenthood' stumbles in second week

As the post-Olympics halo fades, NBC Tuesday drama “Parenthood” dropped off some from its modest bow of one week earlier.

While a decline for a new show in its second outing is not unusual, NBC might have hoped for a better week-two hold, in part because its “The Biggest Loser” lead-in was a bit stronger this week.

“Parenthood” averaged a 2.6 rating/8 share in adults 18-49 and 6.09 million viewers overall during the 10 o’clock hour, losing the 18-49 advantage it held on its premiere night over CBS’ “The Good Wife,” which edged up slightly (2.8/9 in 18-49, 13.95m) and handily led the hour in adults 25-54 (4.1/11 vs. 2.9/8).

Compared to its premiere, which came on the heels of 17 nights of promotion during the Winter Olympics, “Parenthood” declined by 16% in 18-49 (2.6 vs. 3.1) and by a slightly larger 19% in the DVR era, when auds are more inclined to watch a premiere live and then record the program in subsequent weeks. But if the show is to be invited back in the fall, NBC likely won’t want to see any more dropoff in the same-night ratings.

ABC was not much of a factor in the 10 p.m. hour with the finale of rookie crime drama “The Forgotten” (1.5/4 in 18-49, 4.85m), but figures to be more competitive when “V” takes over the slot on March 30.

In cable, USA’s “White Collar” (1.4/4 in 18-49, 4.04m) was on the rise with its season finale and nearly caught ABC’s “Forgotten,” but TNT’s “Southland” (0.7/2, 2.06m) dropped following last week’s second season preem.

Fox won the night in all under-55 demos behind “American Idol” (8.2/23 in 18-49, 22.75m), but CBS still led in total viewers.

Tuesday also saw weak returns for CW’s “90210” (0.8/2 in 18-49, 1.70m) and “Melrose Place” (0.5/1, 1.16m), both of which hadn’t aired original episodes in three months. In adults 18-34, “Melrose” (0.6/2) lagged not only the other broadcasters but also USA, TBS and Comedy Central.

NBC has also lost some ground in latenight this week. After a slew of big-name guests helped make “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno” a big ratings winner in the host’s first week back, “Tonight” and CBS’ “Late Show With David Letterman” were roughly on par in the 18-49 demo through the first two nights this week, with Leno holding a slight advantage in total viewers.