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TV Ratings: ‘Bull,’ ‘This Is Us’ Lead Premiere-Week Winners

One week into the 2016-17 season, CBS’ freshmen are at the head of the fall class.

With “Bull” and “Kevin Can Wait,” the broadcast network premiered the top drama in total viewers and the top comedy in viewers and 18-49 ratings last week in Nielsen live-plus-same day numbers. The former drew a 2.6 rating among adults 18-49 and 15.6 million total viewers in its debut last Monday. The latter premiered the next night to a 2.2 in the demo and 11.1 million viewers. “Kevin Can Wait” benefited from following broadcast’s best lead-in, “The Big Bang Theory.” The Kevin James multi-camera will have to fly solo later this season when it moves up to 8 p.m. and “Big Bang” shifts to Thursday.

Premiering Friday at 8 p.m., CBS’ “MacGyver” reboot drew a respectable 1.7 demo rating and 10.9 million viewers, making it the night’s top broadcast program in both measures.

NBC’s “This Is Us” was the other big winner of premiere week, debuting to a 2.8 demo rating — the highest for any new show thus far — 10 million viewers. The Peacock’s new comedy “The Good Place” premiered Monday to a strong 2.3 rating and 8 million viewers following “The Voice.” The Mike Schur-produced single-camera struggled a bit in its timeslot premiere on Thursday night, drawing a 1.4 and 5.25 million viewers, but retained most of the audience from lead-in “Superstore.”

Single-camera comedy “Speechless” showed promise for ABC, matching its “The Goldbergs” lead-in with a 2.0 in the demo and surpassing it in total viewers with 7.3 million. Also strong was the premiere of drama “Designated Survivor” Wednesday at 10 p.m., drawing a 2.2 rating and 10 million viewers.

But there was downside as well for the Alphabet. New Thursday-night drama “Notorious” drew an abysmal 1.1 rating and 5.4 million viewers — shedding 56% of it’s “Grey’s Anatomy” lead-in in the demo and 38% in viewers. That poor showing no-doubt had a negative impact on “How to Get Away With Murder” at 10 p.m., which debuted its new season to a weak 1.4 in the demo and 5.1 million viewers.

Also suffering from a poor lead-in was Fox’s “Pitch,” which premiered opposite “Notorious” to a 1.1 and 4.2 million viewers. The baseball drama had the misfortune of following sophomore “Rosewood,” which debuted its new season to an anemic 0.7 and 3.7 million viewers. “Lethal Weapon” fared far better on Wednesday night ahead of “Empire,” drawing a 2.2 and 7.8 million viewers.

Delayed viewing gave a solid boost to “Empire,” which drew a 5.5 demo rating in live-plus-three numbers released Monday by Nielsen, a 31% increase. Elsewhere in the Wednesday lineup, “Lethal Weapon” grew 32% to 2.9. On ABC, “The Goldbergs” and “Speechless” each grew 30% to 2.6. “Modern Family” gained 46% to 3.8, and “Black-ish” grew 35% to 2.7. “Designated Survivor” leapt 68% to 3.7.

On NBC, “Blindspot” grew 54% to 2.0. “Law & Order: SVU” grew 61% to 2.9. “Chicago PD” increased 50% to 2.4. CBS’ “Survivor” and “Big Brother” drew smaller gains, in keeping with the trend for reality programming.

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