CBS’ ‘Big Brother’ Up From Last Year As it Opens 16th Season

CBS summer stalwart “Big Brother” looked strong as it returned for its 16th season on Wednesday, dominating its timeslot, ruling as the night’s No. 1 program and outperforming last year’s opener. The night’s other premiere, NBC’s “Taxi Brooklyn,” did OK in the 10 o’clock hour.

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, the first of the two-night “Big Brother” launch averaged a 2.3 rating/9 share in adults 18-49 and 6.6 million viewers overall in the 8 o’clock hour, up a tick in 18-49 and gaining about 100,000 total viewers from last year’s premiere. “Big Brother,” which logged the top demo rating for a CBS telecast in the five weeks since the “Survivor” finale, figures to finish as the week’s No. 1 series in 18-49 (either with Wednesday or Thursday’s hour).

It was followed by encores of “Criminal Minds” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 6.2 million viewers overall) and “CSI” (0.8/3 in 18-49, 5.4 million viewers overall) as CBS won the night in key demos as well as total viewers.

Elsewhere, Fox ran second from 8 to 10 p.m. with “So You Think You Can Dance” (1.4/5 in 18-49, 4.4 million viewers overall), which was down 18% (0.3) from last week’s score, as it was impacted not only by the premiere of “Big Brother” but likely also lost some viewers to NBC’s special “America’s Got Talent” repeat (1.3/5 in 18-49, 6.2 million viewers overall).

Following “Talent” on NBC, the series premiere of “Taxi Brooklyn” did a 1.0/3 in 18-49 and 5.4 million viewers overall, good enough to win the hour among the major networks. Last summer, NBC’s 10 p.m. Wednesday scripted series “Camp” opened to a 1.5 demo rating, but that was with a firstrun “America’s Got Talent” lead-in (2.9 rating in the 9:30 p.m. half hour). The net’s most recent drama premiere, “Crossbones” on Friday, May 30, did the same 1.0 demo rating as last night’s “Taxi.”

As a firstrun, scripted option in the 10 o’clock hour, “Taxi Brooklyn” appeared to take away audience from ABC’s original drama “Motive” (0.7/2 in 18-49, 3.5 million viewers overall), which was down 30% (0.3) from last week’s above average result. From 8 to 10 p.m., the Alphabet aired repeats of “The Middle” (1.1/4 in 18-49, 4.4 million viewers overall), “The Goldbergs” (1.0/4 in 18-49, 3.7 million viewers overall), “Modern Family” (1.2/4 in 18-49, 4.0 million viewers overall) and a second “Goldbergs” (1.0/3 in 18-49, 3.2 million viewers overall).

Univision claimed the night’s No. 1 scripted series in 18-49 with 9 p.m. telenovela “Lo Que la Vida Me Robo” (1.5/5 in 18-49, 3.7 million viewers overall).

CW aired repeats of “Arrow” (0.2/1 in 18-49, 1.1 million viewers overall) and “The 100” (0.2/1 in 18-49, 0.9 million viewers overall).

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: CBS, 1.5/5; Fox, 1.4/5; Univision, 1.3/4; NBC, 1.2/4; ABC, 0.9/3; Telemundo, 0.6/2; CW, 0.2/1.

In total viewers: CBS, 6.1 million; NBC, 5.9 million; Fox, 4.4 million; ABC, 3.7 million; Univision, 3.0, million; Telemundo, 1.7 million; CW, 1.0 million.

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