TV Ratings: FOX's Daytona 500, NBC's 'The Voice' battle for Monday lead
'Smash' stops its slide and rises slightly for NBC
Follow HitFix: Follow @hitfix
Sunday's rainout of the Daytona 500 benefited FOX's Monday, as NASCAR action pushed the network into the primetime lead.
While the racing may have taken a small bite out of NBC's "The Voice," the network got good news in the form of a slight bump for "Smash," which halted two weeks of steep declines and may have found its level.
The racing also may have caused a decline for CBS' comedies, but didn't hurt "The Bachelor," which was up a bit with young viewers.
[Remember that the peculiar timing for the Daytona 500 will lead to the usual ratings uncertainty that comes from live events, leading to some shifting numbers.]
Among adults 18-49, FOX averaged a 4.5 rating, nipping the 4.4 rating for NBC in the key demographic. CBS was a solid, but distant, third with a 3.1 rating. ABC's 2.4 rating and the 0.5 rating for The CW followed.
Overall, FOX averaged an estimated 14.24 million viewers for Monday primetime, along with an 8.2 rating/12 share. NBC's 7.3/11 and 12.13 million viewers followed, with CBS averaging 10.01 million viewers and a 6.3/10 to finish third. ABC's 5.6/9 and 8.34 million viewers finished fourth. Then there was a big drop to the 0.9/1 and 1.28 million viewers for The CW.
8 p.m. - A tight 8 p.m. battle went to FOX's Daytona 500 overall with 14.45 million viewers, while the race finished second with a 4.4 rating among adults 18-49. NBC's "The Voice" was a close second with 14.26 million viewers and won the hour with a 5.0 key demo rating. CBS was third with "How I Met Your Mother" (9.13 million viewers and a 3.6 key demo) and "2 Broke Girls" (10.14 million and a 3.7 key demo). ABC's "The Bachelor" averaged 7.97 million viewers and a 2.6 key demo rating in fourth. The CW's "Gossip Girl" averaged 1.165 million viewers and a 0.5 key demo rating, up a hair from last week.
9 p.m. - "The Voice" took over the overall lead in the 9 p.m. hour with 15.275 million viewers and stayed on top with a 5.8 rating among adults 18-49 for NBC. FOX's Daytona 500 coverage averaged 14.03 million viewers and a 4.5 key demo rating in second. CBS' "Two and a Half Men" (11.81 million and a 3.6 key demo) and "Mike & Molly" (10.1 million and a 2.9 key demo) were low. ABC's "The Bachelor" averaged 7.99 million viewers and a 2.6 key demo rating. The CW's "Hart of Dixie" slid a hair with 1.4 million viewers and a 0.5 key demo rating.
10 p.m. - With FOX out of its normal primetime window (even with the race ongoing and lowering ratings elsewhere), CBS moved into first for the 10 p.m. hour with "Hawaii Five-0" averaging 9.44 million viewers and a 2.5 key demo rating. ABC's "Castle" was second overall with 9.06 million viewers and third with a 2.2 key demo rating. Even with a significantly weaker lead-in, NBC's "Smash" rose to 6.86 million viewers and a 2.4 key demo rating, showing far better retention in its second half-hour than in previous weeks.
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change, particularly in the case of live events.