Broadcast Network Ratings Roundup: Feb. 4-10

CBS Powers To Primetime Ratings Victory

CBS, led by the Grammy Awards, thoroughly dominated primetime on broadcast TV last week. Its average audience was twice that of second-place Fox. Seventeen of the 20 top broadcast programs last week were on CBS, with the exceptions being two episodes of American Idol on Fox and ABC's Modern Family.
Associated Press,

NEW YORK (AP) — NBC, after being heartened by some long-sought success this past fall, has fallen into a deep midwinter freeze.

The network has badly stumbled recently, hitting its three lowest viewership levels for a traditional television season in the past four weeks, the Nielsen ratings company said. The only exception came the week NBC televised the Pro Bowl.

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NBC expected some tough times with the end of the pro football season and its popular Sunday night game. Two other popular shows, the reality singing competition "The Voice" and the sci-fi drama "Revolution," are on hiatus, which network entertainment President Robert Greenblatt noted a month ago in a bid to lower expectations.

"No one is more aware of what January through March will bring than us," he said.

Yet the depth of NBC's recent troubles has to be disheartening. NBC was feeling good about the musical drama "Smash," yet the 4.5 million people who watched its second-season premiere last week represented its smallest audience. The medical drama "Do No Harm" was cancelled after two weeks when it reached a paltry 2.2 million people last week in the time slot NBC once dominated with "ER."

The detective series "Deception," with Victor Garber, seems headed for a short life after reaching 3.1 million people last Monday. The comedy "1600 Penn," about a family living in the White House, had only 2.6 million people on Thursday, Nielsen said.

Brand Connections

The audiences for all four of those series put together roughly equaled the number of people who saw "The Walking Dead," about a sheriff's deputy fighting zombie-like people, on AMC on Sunday night, Nielsen said.

Thirty-three other broadcast programs had bigger audiences than NBC's most-watched show last week, "Dateline NBC." The network has turned over its Friday night schedule to the news division with "Dateline" and Brian Williams' newsmagazine, "Rock Center."

CBS, led by the Grammy Awards, thoroughly dominated prime time on broadcast TV last week. Its average audience was twice that of second-place Fox. Seventeen of the 20 top broadcast programs last week were on CBS, with the exceptions being two episodes of "American Idol" on Fox and ABC's "Modern Family."

CBS averaged 13.2 million viewers for the week (8.0 rating, 13 share). A ratings point represents 1,147,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation's estimated 114.7 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

Fox was second with 6.5 million (3.8, 6), ABC had 6.3 million (4.1, 7), NBC had 4.3 million (2.8, 5), the CW had 1.6 million (1.0, 2) and Ion Television had 1.2 million (0.8, 1).

Among the Spanish-language networks, Univision led with a 3.7 million prime-time average (1.9, 3). Telemundo had 1.3 million (0.7, 1), UniMas had 960,000 (0.5, 1), Estrella had 230,000 (0.1, 0) and Azteca 130,000 (also 0.1, 0).

NBC's "Nightly News" topped the evening newscasts with an average of 9.6 million viewers (6.4, 12). ABC's "World News" was second with 8.6 million (5.8, 11) and the "CBS Evening News" had 7.5 million viewers (5.0, 9). It was the biggest audience for CBS' evening newscast since January 2009.

The Top 20

Primetime viewership numbers compiled by Nielsen for Feb. 4-10. Listings include the week's ranking and viewership.

1. "Grammy Awards," CBS, 28.38 million.

2. "NCIS," CBS, 21.79 million.

3. "The Big Bang Theory," CBS, 18.98 million.

4. "NCIS: Los Angeles," CBS, 16.67 million.

5. "Person of Interest," CBS, 14.88 million.

6. "American Idol" (Wednesday), Fox, 14.27 million.

7. "Two and a Half Men," CBS, 14.12 million.

8. "American Idol" (Thursday), Fox, 13.28 million.

9. "Criminal Minds," CBS, 11.98 million.

10. "2 Broke Girls," CBS, 11.37 million.

11. "Blue Bloods," CBS, 11.24 million.

12. "60 Minutes," CBS, 11.04 million.

13. "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," CBS, 10.97 million.

14. "Elementary," CBS, 10.84 million.

15. "Mike & Molly," CBS, 10.77 million.

16. "How I Met Your Mother," CBS, 10.31 million.

17. "Vegas," CBS, 10.25 million.

18. "Hawaii Five-0," CBS, 9.86 million.

19. "Modern Family," ABC, 9.83 million.

20. "CSI: NY," CBS, 9.57 million.

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Ratings

Overnights, adults 18-49 for September 28, 2016
  • 1.
    2.8/10
  • 2.
    1.9/7
  • 3.
    1.7/6
  • 4.
    1.4/5
  • 5.
    0.6/2
  • 6.
    0.4/1
Source: Nielsen

Reviews

  • Rob Owen

    Easily fall’s best broadcast network comedy pilot, NBC’s The Good Place offers a clever high-concept premise that’s complemented with intelligent, sometimes absurdist humor. Created by Michael Schur, co-creator of NBC’s Parks and Recreation, The Good Place is a highly serialized series that’s essentially set in heaven and stars Kristen Bell and Ted Danson. NBC made five episodes of The Good Place available for review, and the show not only holds up, but also it improves, deepening characters that initially feel one-note and frequently leaving viewers guessing with cliffhanger endings to many of the episodes. The combination of snappy dialogue and winning but flawed characters makes The Good Place a great bet for fans of smart TV comedy.

  • Maureen Ryan

    Pitch has swagger, for good reason. It gets the big things right; the Fox drama about the first female baseball player in the Major Leagues is one of the year’s most assured and exciting debuts. But part of what impresses about the pilot is also the way it confidently strings together so many small but telling details. Ginny (Kylie Bunbury) is the first woman to be called up from the minors to the big leagues, and no show since Friday Night Lights has done a better job of portraying the internal and external pressures that weigh heavily on young athletes asked to do much more than merely succeed on the field. Pitch will likely do a good job of getting viewers to root for it. The hope is that the show won’t be an impressive, short-lived curiosity, but rather a long-term phenomenon.

  • Kevin Fallon

    In a fall TV season that’s already making a splash for championing diverse, distinctive voices in an array of projects that they created, wrote, and starred in, Better Things on FX stands out. The show is created by, written by, and starsPamela Adlon. She plays Sam Fox, the single mother of three daughters modeled after her own reality-show-ready experience raising three girls in Los Angeles following a divorce. Sam is also, like Adlon, a working actress — on shows both raunchy, a la Californication, and animated for children, like her role on Recess. It’s a refreshingly blunt take on single motherhood without sacrificing the warmth of parental love, portraying the dance between selfishness and selflessness that’s at the heart of being a parent — especially one weathering the hormonal fireworks of a household of four women at different ages.

  • David Wiegand

    The fall TV season doesn’t count as much as it used to — we already know that. But no matter how many retreads the broadcast networks throw at viewers in the next few months, this fall will be memorable because of the premiere of Atlanta on Tuesday, Sept. 6, on FX. The half-hour comedy created by and starring Donald Glover (Community), simply and brilliantly recalibrates our expectations of what a TV comedy is and how black lives are portrayed on the medium.

  • Louisa Ada Seltzer

    The second reboot of the 1980s John Candy movie Uncle Buck, bumped by ABC from midseason, has the same tired jokes you'll find on any second-rate sitcom. Too bad, because Mike Epps is appealing and ABC would be wise to keep him around for future shows, but there’s just not enough to this show to suggest it will last past summer. It also airs against NBC’s America’s Got Talent, summer’s No. 1 program on broadcast, which may make it even harder to find an audience.

  • Neil Genzlinger

    Bryan Cranston brings his Tony Award-winning interpretation of President Lyndon B. Johnson to television in an adaptation of the Robert Schenkkan play All the Way, and it’s still quite a sight to behold, just as it was on Broadway in 2014. Nothing beats witnessing this kind of larger-than-life portrayal onstage, of course. But the television version, presented by HBO, offers plenty of rewards, allowing Cranston to work the close-ups and liberating him from the confines of a theater set. Cranston’s performance is a gem — in his hands, this accidental president comes across as an amazing bundle of contradictions, someone who seems at once too vulgar for the job and just right for it.

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