NBC got another solid performance from "The Sing Off," while ABC's "Modern Family" delivered the night's best half-hour performance in the all-important demographic, but CBS basically controlled all three primtime hours in the key measures on Wednesday night.
Among adults 18-49, CBS averaged a 3.0 rating, beating the 2.4 ratings for both ABC and NBC in the demographic advertisers crave. FOX's 1.9 rating was good for fourth, while The CW trailed with a 0.6 rating.
Overall, CBS averaged an estimated 12.3 million viewers to go with a 7.4 rating/12 share. NBC was a distant second with a 4.4/7 and 7.135 million viewers, nipping ABC's 4.3/7 and 6.945 million viewers. FOX was fourth witha 3.3/5 and 5.5 million viewers, leaving The CW in fifth with a 1.1/2 and 1.65 million viewers.
8 p.m. -- CBS began its primetime sweep with 12.17 million viewers and a 3.6 demo rating for "Survivor." ABC was a distant second with the combined 8.07 million viewers for "The Middle" and "Better with You." The first hour of NBC's "The Sing Off" averaged 7.19 million viewers for third and finished second in the demo with a 2.4 rating. FOX's "Human Target" was fourth with 5.69 million viewers and a 1.6 demo rating. That left The CW's "Victoria's Secret Fashion Show" encore in fifth with a solid 2.43 million viewers.
9 p.m. -- For the full 9 p.m. hour, CBS' "Criminal Minds" was first with 14.22 million viewers and a 3.5 demo rating. ABC saw a big drop between "Modern Family" (10.975 million viewers and a 4.1 demo rating) and "Cougar Town" (6.53 million viewers and a 2.6 demo). "The Sing Off" improved to nearly 8 million viewers and a 2.9 demo for NBC. FOX's "Hell's Kitchen" was fourth with 5.32 million viewers and a 2.3 demo rating. The CW's "Fashion Forward" special drew only 860,000 viewers and a 0.3 demo rating.
10 p.m. -- "The Defenders" topped the 10 p.m. hour for CBS with 10.5 million viewers and a 2.0 demo rating. NBC's "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" repeat was second with 6.22 million viewers and a close second in the demo. ABC's repeats of "Modern Family" and "Cougar Town" finished third with 4.01 million viewers.
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change.
A long-time member of the TCA Board and a longer-time blogger of "American Idol," Dan Fienberg writes about TV, except for when he writes about movies or sometimes writes about the Red Sox. But never music. He would sound stupid talking about music.