UPDATE: In updated nationals from Nielsen released Friday afternoon, Fox’s “American Idol” picked up a tenth (2.8/9 in 18-49, 10.65 million viewers overall) but newcomer “Backstrom” gave one back (1.9/6 in 18-49, 7.98 million viewers overall).

At CBS, both “Mom” (2.4/8 in 18-49, 11.05 million viewers overall) and “Two and a Half Men” (2.2/7 in 18-49, 9.31 million viewers overall) were revised downward by a tenth.

NBC’s finale of “Bad Judge” also came down a tenth (0.7/2 in 18-49, 2.86 million viewers overall), but CW’s “The Vampire Diaries” edged up (0.8/2 in 18-49, 1.64 million viewers overall) to avoid matching its series low.


Fox drama “Backstrom” opened to credible numbers on Thursday behind “American Idol” but may have a tough time staying at this level in coming weeks when ABC’s “Scandal” and then NBC’s “The Blacklist” move into its timeslot.

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, the Rainn Wilson-fronted “Backstrom” averaged a 2.0 rating/6 share in adults 18-49 and about 8 million viewers overall in the 9 o’clock hour, placing second to CBS comedies and retaining nearly 75% of its demo lead-in from “American Idol” (2.7/9 in 18-49, 10.5 million viewers overall), which was the night’s top show in young adults and was up roughly 17% from its performance in the 8 o’clock hour one week earlier. A year ago, “Rake” on Fox bowed with a 1.7 demo rating, which was a mere 50% retention of “American Idol.”

The drama brought more of a male skew to the network, as men made up about 46% of the 18-49 audience for “Backstrom,” vs. roughly 37% for its “Idol” lead-in.

The 2.0 for “Backstrom” is a middle-of-the-road premiere score for this season, putting it on par with NBC’s “The Mysteries of Laura” and CBS’ “Madam Secretary” and “Stalker.” “Backstrom” did fall off some in its second half-hour (from 2.1 to 1.8), and next week its competition will include the winter premiere of ABC’s “Scandal.”

At CBS, which placed second to Fox for the night in 18-49, “Mom” (2.5/8 in 18-49, 11.2 million viewers overall) continued its solid second season, up a tick from last week and performing slightly better in the demo (pending updates) than its repeat lead-in from “The Big Bang Theory” (2.4/8 in 18-49, 11.6 million viewers overall). One week earlier, “Mom” did a 2.4 behind a 2.5 for the repeat “Big Bang.”

“Two and a Half Men” (2.3/7 in 18-49, 9.6 million viewers overall) was also up from last week, and was followed by a special repeat of “The Big Bang Theory” (1.9/6 in 18-49, 8.3 million viewers overall), which was a late sub for “The McCarthys” and performed about 25% better than last week’s original episode of the rookie. “Elementary” closed out the night (1.5/5 in 18-49, 8.2 million viewers overall), matching its season high and winning its timeslot among the broadcast networks.

NBC’s lineup of “The Biggest Loser” (1.2/4 in 18-49, 4.6 million viewers overall), the season finales of “Bad Judge” (0.8/2 in 18-49, 3.0 million viewers overall) and “A to Z” (0.8/2 in 18-49, 2.1 million viewers overall) and the penultimate episode of “Parenthood” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 4.4 million viewers overall) were all up a bit from last week — though pre-emptions for college basketball on the NBC stations in Portland and Louisville may have juiced last night’s prelim scores for the net.

ABC aired the finale of “TGIT” placeholder “The Taste” (0.8/2 in 18-49, 3.0 million viewers overall), which was actually down a tick from last week and finished fourth among the Big Four from 8 to 10. A repeat of “How to Get Away With Murder” aired at 10 (0.5/2 in 18-49, 2.3 million viewers overall) in advance of the show’s winter premiere next week.

At CW, “The Vampire Diaries” (0.7/2 in 18-49, 1.7 million viewers overall) matched its low as it returned with its first original in six weeks. And “Reign” (0.4/1 in 18-49, 1.3 million viewers overall) was down a tick from its most recent original, also six weeks earlier.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: Fox, 2.4/7; CBS, 2.0/6; Univision, 1.1/4; NBC, 1.1/3; ABC, 0.7/2; CW and Telemundo, 0.6/2.

In total viewers: CBS, 9.5 million; Fox, 9.3 million; NBC, 3.9 million; Univision, 2.9 million; ABC, 2.8 million; CW and Telemundo, 1.5 million.