President Obama's latest primetime press conference forced the networks to move their schedules around on Tuesday night, most conspicuously leaving FOX without a new "American Idol" and giving CBS and NBC the chance to each claim a ratings crown.
NBC won among adults 18-49, doing a 3.5 rating in the key demographic. CBS' 3.2 rating and the 2.8 rating for ABC followed closely. FOX was fourth with a 1.6 rating and The CW's 0.6 rating was fifth.
Overall, though, CBS won handily, averaging an estimated 14.99 million viewers in primetime to go with a 9.6 rating/15 share. ABC was second with a 7.1/11, while NBC's 6.0/9 was good enough for third. FOX was a distant fourth with a 2.7/4, while The CW trailed with a 1.1/2.
In the 8 p.m. hour, four of the five networks televised President Obama's press conference. CBS led the way in that hour with a 6.4/10, followed closely by ABC and NBC. FOX was a distant fourth with a 2.8/4. On The CW, a new episode of "Reaper" got a very minor Obama bounce and did a 1.5/2.
CBS moved into first at 9 p.m. with an 11.2/17 for a new episode of "NCIS." The season's second "Dancing with the stars" results show gave ABC a 10.1/15 for second. NBC's "Biggest Losers: Couples" was third with a 5.8/9. FOX's "House" repeat and an old "90210" on The CW trailed.
"The Mentalist" won the 10 p.m. hour for CBS with an 11.2/18. NBC's "Biggest Loser: Couples" was up to a 6.6/11 and easily won the hour in the 18-49 demo. ABC's "What Would You Do?" special had a 5.6/9 for 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.
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