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Reality rules in weekly ratings

ABC's 'Bachelorette' is tops in key demos

Veteran reality programs — led by ABC’s “The Bachelorette” — ruled the primetime ratings race last week, accounting for eight of the top 10 programs among young adults.

While a good number of scripted dramas are delivering solid numbers this season, they’re not necessarily the biggest of draws among the under-50 crowd. Outside of HBO’s “True Blood,” no firstrun scripted drama cracked the top 20 in adults 18-49 last week.

Still, cable’s enjoying another solid summer with original scripted dramas, including TNT newcomer “Rizzoli and Isles,” which stayed above 7 million viewers in its second outing, and USA rookie “Covert Affairs,” which grew to 5.2 million.

Overall, according to Nielsen estimates, Fox led the July 19-25 frame in adults 18-49 thanks mostly to its midweek reality combo of “Hell’s Kitchen” and “So You Think You Can Dance.” Its 1.7 rating/6 share was followed by ABC (1.5/5), CBS, NBC and Univision (all tied at 1.4/5) and top cabler USA (0.9/3).

CBS tied Fox for the lead among adults 25-54 (1.9/6) and the Eye prevailed rather easily in total viewers (5.9 million).

It was ABC, though, that claimed the week’s top program in demos, as the penultimate regular episode of “The Bachelorette” hit season highs (3.4/10 in 18-49, 10.07 million viewers overall). It teamed with the finale of “True Beauty” (1.8/5, 5.24m) to give the Alphabet its eighth consecutive Monday victory.

Also for ABC, “Wipeout” placed in the week’s top 10 with its segs on Tuesday (2.9/10, 8.34m) and Thursday (2.6/9, 7.86m).

At Fox, “Hell’s Kitchen” claimed the week’s No. 2 spot in the 18-49 rankings (3.2/9 in 18-49, 6.98m), and a repeat of “Family Guy” scored well enough Sunday (2.6/7, 5.16m) to crack the top 10.

CBS was paced by “Big Brother,” which was up year-to-year with all three of its weekly segs; Sunday’s episode rated highest (2.5/8, 7.19m).

CBS.com may be driving some of the ratings gains, and vice versa, as the net’s online site reported 5.6 million page views last week — up a big 57% vs. the same frame a year ago.

NBC was represented in the demo top 10 by “America’s Got Talent” on Tuesday (3.0/9, 10.48m) and Wednesday (2.6/8, 10.02m) but didn’t have a whole lot else going on; Tuesday’s “Talent” was the week’s most-watched program overall.

Much of cable’s top programs came Monday, including TNT’s scripted combo of “Rizzoli and Isles” (1.5/4, 7.27m) and “The Closer” (1.3/4, 6.97m), with the former retaining nearly all of its premiere audience and building upon its “Closer” demo lead-in by even bigger margins than its series premiere.

Also clicking on cable Monday were USA’s “WWE Raw” (1.9/5, 5.17m), Bravo’s “Real Housewives of New Jersey” (1.4/4, 2.74m), Lifetime movie “The Client List” (1.4/4, 3.90m) and ABC Family’s “The Secret Life of the American Teenager” (1.3/4, 3.04m), which earned a 3.5/11 in females 12-34.

The only show in all of primetime last week to beat “Teenager” in femmes 12-34 was MTV’s “Teen Mom” on Tuesday (1.9/6, 3.65m), which did a big 4.4/13 in its target demo.

Also Tuesday, Discovery’s “Deadliest Catch” remained hot (2.4/7, 5.47m), ranking 12th for the week in 18-49. And USA’s new “Covert Affairs” (1.6/5, 5.21m) again built nicely on its “White Collar” lead-in (1.2/3, 3.96m).

On Thursday, USA scored again with “Burn Notice” (1.7/5, 5.87m) and “Royal Pains” (1.6/5, 5.28m).

And on Sunday, “True Blood” led the way (2.8/8, 4.74m), but other good cable demo perfs included “Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami” on E! (1.4/4, 2.68m) and “Next Food Network Star” on Food Network (1.3/4, 3.48m).

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