Fast National ratings for Tuesday, April 21, 2009.

Thanks to a typically robust episode of "American Idol," FOX had no trouble rolling to Tuesday ratings wins in all key measures. Meanwhile, a special Tuesday tryout for "The Unusuals" probably did little to improv e the show's hopes for renewal.

Among adults 18-49, FOX averaged a 6.0 rating, comfortably beating the 3.4 rating for NBC in the key demographic. CBS was third with a 2.4 rating, followed by the 1.9 rating for ABC and The CW's 1.0 rating.

Overall, FOX averaged an estimated 16.88 million viewers in primetime to go with a 9.9 rating/15 share. CBS was well back in second with a 6.8/11, beating the 5.6/9 for NBC and ABC's 5.4/9. The CW was fifth with a 1.6/2.

"American Idol" won the 8 p.m. hour for FOX with a 13.6/22, though the show's 8.0 demo rating was on the low side (for "Idol"). NBC was second with a 5.4/9 first hour for "Biggest Loser: Couples." CBS took third with repeats of "Big Bang Theory" and "Two and a Half Men." ABC's "According to Jim" was fourth, with a pair of new episodes. The CW's "Reaper" was fifth with a 1.6/3.

[Note: The CW had preemptions for sports in several major markets including Chicago and St. Louis. That would explain at least a slight artificial ratings boost for "Reaper."]

ABC grabbed first at 9 p.m. with a 9.4/14 for the "Dancing with the Stars" results show. A CBS repeat of "NCIS" was a solid second. NBC's "Biggest Loser: Couples" was third with a 6.4/10 and won the hour in the 18-49 demo. FOX's "Fringe," aided with only a couple minutes of "Idol" overrun, was fourth with a 6.3/9. The CW's "90210" had a 1.6/2.

A repeat of "The Mentalist" did an 8.1/14 to win the 10 p.m. hour. NBC took second with a "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" repeat. ABC put "The Unusuals" on a special night and it did a 4.2/7, plummeting from its lead-in. 

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.