TV Ratings: Big 'MasterChef Junior' premiere lets FOX split Election Night Tuesday
FOX's "MasterChef" appears to have helped lift FOX to a Tuesday win among young viewers, while CBS' "NCIS" and "NCIS: New Orleans" repeats led overall.
However, with live Election Night coverage impacting programming differently in almost every market, it'd be presumptuous to make any big calls based on the ratings equivalent of exit polling.
Just as it'd be presumptuous to claim that "MasterChef Junior" is a saving grace for FOX's struggling Tuesday -- the cooking show hit series highs and boosted the network's comedies to post-premiere highs -- it would only be of limited use to note the huge drop for "Marry Me" and "About a Boy" out of a weakened "The Voice" lead-in, though the percentage decline can't make NBC happy.
And, finally on the list of things we can't be sure about, ABC's two episodes of "Selfie" did soft numbers, as did the "Marvel: 75 Years, From Pulp To Pop!" special.
On to the numbers...
Among adults 18-49, FOX averaged a 1.6 rating for Tuesday night, edging out NBC's 1.5 rating in the key demographic. CBS was third with a 1.2 key demo rating, followed closely by ABC's 1.0 key demo rating. The CW averaged a 0.5 key demo rating for the night.
Overall, though, CBS averaged an estimated 9.03 million viewers and a 5.8 rating/9 share for Tuesday night and I think we can assume that even once live news break-ins are taken into account, CBS was still the night's most watched network. NBC was far back in second with 6.11 million viewers and a 3.9/6. FOX's 4.11 million viewers and 2.6/4 and the 2.4/4 and 3.68 million viewers for ABC followed. The CW averaged 1.58 million viewers and a 1.0/2.
8 p.m. - A repeat of "NCIS: New Orleans" won the 8 p.m. hour with 10 million viewers and finished third with a 1.4 rating among adults 18-49 for CBS. NBC's "The Voice" clip show was second with 9.52 million viewers and won the hour with a 2.3 key demo rating. FOX's "MasterChef Junior" premiere averaged 5.05 million viewers and a 1.8 rating among adults 18-49. ABC's two new "Selfie" episodes averaged 3.68 million viewers and did a 1.0 key demo rating (a 1.0 for the first episode and a 0.9 for the second) for the hour. The CW's repeat of "The Flash" averaged 1.87 million viewers and a 0.6 key demo rating.
9 p.m. - An "NCIS" repeat averaged 11.71 million viewers to win the 9 p.m. hour for CBS and also tied for first with a 1.5 rating among adults 18-49. NBC was a distant second overall and tied for third in the key demo with "Marry Me" (4.98 million and a 1.3 key demo) and "About a Boy" (4.13 million and a 1.1 key demo). ABC's Marvel special was third with 3.85 million viewers and tied for third with a 1.2 key demo rating. FOX tied for first for the hour in the key demo and finished fourth overall with "New Girl" (3.42 million and a 1.6 key demo) and "The Mindy Project" (2.91 million and a 1.3 key demo). The CW's "Supernatural" repeat averaged 1.29 million viewers and a 0.5 key demo rating.
10 p.m. - All three networks went to election coverage in the 10 p.m. hour. CBS won overall with 5.37 million viewers and tied for second with a 0.8 rating among adults 18-49. NBC was second with 4.27 million viewers and won with a 1.0 key demo rating. ABC averaged 3.51 million viewers and a 0.8 key demo rating.
[UPDATE: FOX's rejuvenated Tuesday held up in Live+Same Day Finals, as "MasterChef Junior" kept its 1.8 rating among adults 18-49 and "New Girl" and "Mindy Project" stayed with a 1.6 and 1.3 respectively. That's a good night for FOX. Things were less good for NBC as "About a Boy" slipped below The Mulaney Line to a 0.9 rating among adults 18-49 for the night. Also slipping was "Selfie," as ABC's first of two episodes dropped to a 0.9 in the key demo, joining the second episode.]
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.