We're not sure if this counts as a full win for the Olympics in their on-going head-to-head showdown with "American Idol
," but facing a padded results show on FOX, NBC had no trouble controlling Thursday's 8 p.m. hour overall. That, combined with a big late-evening bump with coverage of ladies' figure skating gave NBC an easy nightly win.
Among adults 18-49, NBC averaged a 5.8 rating, topping the 4.9 rating for FOX in the key demographic. CBS' 2.5 rating and the 1.2 rating for ABC followed. The CW's 0.7 rating trailed.
Overall, NBC averaged an estimated 22.49 million viewers and a 13.3 rating/21 share, fare ahead of the 7.4/11 and 12.75 million viewers for FOX. CBS' 6.0/9 was a solid third. That left ABC's 2.8/4 and the 1.1/2 for The CW way behind.
In the competitive 8 p.m. hour, NBC's Olympics coverage averaged an 11.4/17 and 19.24 million viewers, but only a 4.4 demo rating. FOX's "American Idol," in turn, did a 10.2/16 and 17.84 million viewers, but won the hour in the key demo with a 6.4 rating. CBS' "Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains" had a 6.7/10 and a 3.7 demo rating for third. ABC's new "The Deep End
" could muster only a 2.7/4 for fourth. That left The CW in fifth with a repeat of "The Vampire Diaries."
NBC's Olympics telecast soared to a 14.6/22 and a 6.5 demo rating in the 9 p.m. hour. CBS' repeat of "The Mentalist" was up to second with a 6.2/9. FOX's new "Kitchen Nightmares" plummeted to a 4.5/7 overall, but finished second for the hour in the key demo. ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" repeat was fourth. Fifth went to The CW's "Supernatural" repeat, which did a 1.0/2.
The Olympics stayed on top for NBC at 10 p.m. with a 13.8/23 and a 6.6 demo rating. CBS' "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" repeat was second with a 5.1/8, leaving ABC's "Private Practice" in third.
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.