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ABC’s ‘Work It’ not too pretty in premiere

CBS' 'NCIS' duo top Tuesday; NBC's 'Loser' down

ABC’s cross-dressing comedy ”Work It” couldn’t take advantage of its pre-show controversy, opening to just-OK ratings Tuesday. CBS dramas, led by 20 million viewers for ”NCIS,” dominated the night.

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, ”Work It” averaged a 2.0 rating/5 share in adults 18-49 and 6.1 million viewers overall in the 8:30 p.m. half-hour, dropping off from its ”Last Man Standing” lead-in (2.4/6 in 18-49, 7.9 million viewers overall) and placing third among the broadcasters in its timeslot. While not a great number, it did beat out the last six original episodes of the comedy it replaced, ”Man Up.” The show, which GLAAD has criticized pre-air because it believes it may be harmful to the transgender community, skewed about 60/40 female.

Elsewhere for ABC, limited-run series ”Celebrity Wife Swap” did OK in its time-period debut (2.2/5 in 18-49, 6.0 million viewers overall), placing third among the broadcasters in the 9 o’clock hour but certainly an upgrade over the net’s recent performance in the timeslot with repeat comedies; show is airing through January. And at 10, ”Body of Proof” dipped to a 1.5/4 in 18-49 and 7.0 million viewers overall). Overall, ABC was up over the comparable night a year ago when it aired dramas ”No Ordinary Family” and ”V.”

CBS vet ”NCIS” was easily Tuesday’s No. 1 program in adults 18-49 (4.2/11) and total viewers (20.0 million) , the second time this season that it has hit 20 million viewers. It was followed by ”NCIS: Los Angeles” (3.5/8 in 18-49, 17.1 million viewers overall), which had its best demo score since Oct. 25 while drawing its largest overall audience of the season. ”Unforgettable” dropped off from there (2.5/6 in 18-49, 11.6 million viewers overall) but was up from its most recent original episode and easily beat the competing dramas on ABC and NBC.

For the night, CBS rolled among the broadcasters in 18-49, 25-54 and total viewers (a category in which it beat the combined tune-in for ABC, NBC and Fox). The net’s dramas claimed the top three spots in Tuesday’s 18-49 rankings.

At NBC, ”The Biggest Loser” opened its second edition of this season with a 2.3/6 in 18-49 and 6.5 million viewers overall , ahead of ABC’s ”Wife Swap” but down about 30% from last year’s bow at the same time. The show, which had wrapped its fall edition just three weeks earlier, appears to be tiring in its eighth year.

Fox aired repeats of its regulars ”Glee” (0.9/2 in 18-49, 2.5 million viewers overall), ”New Girl” (1.3/3 in 18-49, 3.1 million viewers overall) and ”Raising Hope” (0.9/2 in 18-49, 2.3 million viewers overall). The net’s lineup returns in originals on Jan. 17.

CW went with a pair of ”The Secret Circle” repeats (averaging a mere 0.3/1 in 18-49 and 900,000 viewers overall).

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: CBS, 3.4/9; NBC, 2.1/5; ABC, 2.0/5; Univision, 1.4/4; Fox, 1.0/2; CW, 0.3/1.

In total viewers: CBS, 16.2 million; ABC, 6.7 million; NBC, 6.0 million; Univision, 3.4 million; Fox, 2.6 million; CW, 0.9 million.

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