TV Ratings: 'Big Bang Theory' rises for CBS Thursday, while NBC comedies crater
'The Vampire Diaries' thumps 'Parks and Rec'
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CBS cruised to Thursday night victories in all measures with yet another huge night for "The Big Bang Theory" through to "Elementary," which pushed ahead of "Scandal" overall, continuing their recent back-and-forth.
There were few other notables on Thursday though all of NBC's comedies took a drop, drawing under 3 million viewers and dipping to a 1.0 rating or lower among adults 18-49. [NBC's comedies only drew over 3 million in last week's Fast Nationals due to football and both "Sean Saves The World" and "The Michael J. Fox Show" are slightly up from last week's Finals in total viewers.]
At least in Fast Nationals, "The Vampire Diaries" even beat NBC overall (and crushed both NBC and ABC in the key demo), while The CW also got a possible series high for "Reign," though the network had the NFL preemption in Atlanta, so the numbers will surely lower at least slightly, even though the Falcons stink and Atlanta residents surely know it.
FOX had the NFL preemption in New Orleans, which probably accounts for week-to-week bumps for "The X Factor" and "Glee."
On to the numbers...
Among adults 18-49, CBS averaged a 2.6 rating for Thursday night, well ahead of the 2.1 rating for ABC in the key demographic. There was a drop to FOX's 1.6 key demo rating, to The CW's 1.1 key demo rating and finally to NBC's 1.0 rating in the key demo.
Overall, CBS averaged an estimated 11.03 million viewers and a 6.9 rating/11 share for Thursday primetime. ABC was a distant second with 6.94 million viewers and a 4.7/8, beating FOX's 5.17 million viewers and 3.2/5. NBC averaged an estimated 3.1 million viewers and 2.1/3, holding off the 1.6/3 and 2.55 million viewers for The CW.
8 p.m. - CBS started primetime in first with "The Big Bang Theory" (18.59 million viewers and a 5.2 key demo rating) and "The Millers" (12.04 million and a 2.8 key demo rating). There was a massive drop to second place FOX, which averaged 5.88 million viewers and a 1.6 rating among adults 18-49 for "The X Factor." ABC's "Once Upon a Time in Wonderland" was third with 3.51 million viewers and fifth with a 0.9 key demo rating. The CW's "The Vampire Diaries" averaged a preliminary 2.9 million viewers and 1.3 key demo rating, right in line with last week's totals, so it's possible the football drop won't be big. ["The Vampire Diaries" was second for the hour among adults 18-34.] NBC's two episodes of "Parks and Recreation" averaged 2.81 million viewers and a 1.0 key demo rating.
9 p.m. - CBS maintained its overall lead but dropped to second among adults 18-49 with "The Crazy Ones" (8.73 million and a 2.2 key demo) and "Two and a Half Men" (8.62 million and a 2.1 key demo). ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" was a close second with 8.48 million viewers and finished first with a 2.5 key demo rating. FOX's "Glee" was third with 4.44 million viewers and a 1.6 key demo rating. On NBC, "Sean Saves The World" (2.975 million and a 0.9 key demo) and "The Michael J. Fox Show" (2.8 million and a 0.9 key demo) both dropped. The CW's "Reign" drew 2.19 million viewers and a 0.9 key demo rating, both potentially series highs, though the drama's bumps in male demos look suspicious.
10 p.m. - "Elementary" reclaimed 10 p.m. overall with 9.11 million viewers, but stayed in second with a 1.8 rating among adults 18-49 for CBS. ABC's "Scandal" averaged 8.83 million viewers for second and won the hour with a 2.9 key demo rating. "Parenthood" delivered NBC's best ratings for the night with 3.61 million viewers and a 1.2 key demo rating, down from last week.
UPDATE: Final Live+SD figures are in and, as predicted, the networks impacted by NFL preemptions fell a little. Shocking, right? Actually, most impressively, "The Vampire Diaries" didn't fall, at least not among adults 18-49, where it still averaged a 1.3 rating, beating "Parks and Recreation" and "Once Upon a Time in Wonderland," which were flat with 1.0 and 0.9 key demo ratings. And "Vampire Diaries" still topped ABC, NBC and and FOX's "The X Factor" among adults 18-34. "The Vampire Diaries" did, however, slip to 2.67 million viewers overall, dropping it behind "Parks and Recreation" in total viewers. Falling predictably, but possibly not as much as feared, was "Reign," which slipped to 1.81 million viewers and a 0.7 key demo rating, both up from last week. FOX's "The X Factor" slipped to 5.54 million viewers and a 1.5 key demo rating, while "Glee" was down to 4.09 million viewers and a 1.4 key demo rating. As always, "The Big Bang Theory" rose in Finals to 5.3 in the key demo and to 18.94 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, particularly in the case of live events.