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TELEVISION & RADIO | Prime-Time TV Rankings

`NCIS' soars to top of the ratings

With repeats ruling the airwaves, the drama helps CBS extend its streak as the most-watched network.

December 20, 2006|From City News Service

With no first-run episodes of any of the season's six most-watched programs, CBS' "NCIS" emerged as the week's most-watched program for the first time in its four-season history, according to figures released Tuesday by Nielsen Media Research.

Topped by the 17.39 million viewers for "NCIS," CBS had six of the eight most-watched programs between Dec. 11 and Sunday to extend its streak of being the most-watched network each week of the season to 13 weeks.

CBS averaged 12.27 million viewers for its prime-time programming, while NBC was second with 9.1 million, followed by Fox with 7.35 million, ABC with 7.23 million and the CW with 2.52 million.

Sunday's two-hour finale of CBS' "Survivor: Cook Islands" drew 16.42 million viewers to rank No. 3 for the week. But it was the lowest among the 13 "Survivor" finales.

ESPN's "Monday Night Football" was in its customary place atop cable programs, with the Dec. 11 game between the Chicago Bears and St. Louis Rams drawing 11.18 million viewers, which would have put it 20th among the programs on the five major broadcast networks.

A pair of World Wrestling Entertainment professional wrestling programs finished second and third for the week among cable programs, enabling USA to be the week's most-watched cable channel in prime time, averaging 2.55 million viewers.

The "NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams" finished first in the weekly ratings among the three nightly network newscasts for the 13th consecutive week and 124th time in the last 128 weeks with 9.02 million viewers. "ABC's World News With Charles Gibson" was second with 8.45 million, while the "CBS Evening News With Katie Couric" was in third place for the 12th consecutive week with 7.47 million viewers.

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(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX)

Here are the rankings for national prime-time network television last week (Dec. 11-17) as compiled by Nielsen Media Research. They are based on the average number of people who watched a program from start to finish. Nielsen estimates there are 283.5 million potential viewers in the U.S. ages 2 and older. Viewership is listed in millions.

*--* 1 NCIS CBS 17.39 2 Deal or No Deal (Mon.) NBC 16.70 3 Survivor: Cook Island Finale CBS 16.42 4 House (Tue.) FOX 16.12 5 Criminal Minds CBS 16.06

6 CSI: Miami CBS 15.99 7 CSI: NY CBS 15.83 8 Two and a Half Men CBS 15.69 9 Sunday Night Football NBC 15.26 10 CSI CBS 15.12

11 Survivor: Cook Islands CBS 14.55 12 NFL Postgame (Sun.) FOX 14.41 13 60 Minutes CBS 14.18 14 Wonderful World of Disney: "Santa Claus 2" ABC 13.67 15 The Unit CBS 13.65

16 Survivor: Cook Island Reunion CBS 13.53 17 The New Adventures of Old Christine CBS 11.96 18 Biggest Loser 3 NBC 11.73 19 Numb3rs CBS 11.23 20 "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" ABC 10.96

21 Criminal Minds (Tue.) CBS 10.41 22 Shark CBS 10.25 23 NFL Pregame (Sun.) NBC 10.21 24 Grey's Anatomy ABC 10.00 25 Medium NBC 9.96

26 The OT (football postgame) FOX 9.85 27 Ghost Whisperer CBS 9.66 28 Close to Home CBS 9.65 29 King of Queens (8:30 p.m.) CBS 9.04 30 King of Queens (8 p.m.) CBS 9.02

31 Family Guy (9 p.m.) FOX 8.91 32 The Simpsons FOX 8.88 33 Law & Order: SVU NBC 8.81 34 "Barbara Walters Special" ABC 8.79 35 1 vs. 100 NBC 8.78

36 The Class CBS 8.70 37 How I Met Your Mother CBS 8.66 38 Bones (8 p.m.) FOX 8.60 39 The Office NBC 8.44 40 Las Vegas NBC 8.39

41 Ugly Betty (Thu.) ABC 8.05 42 Football Night in America, Part 3 NBC 8.04 43 "Charlie Brown Christmas" ABC 7.98 44 Family Guy (9:30 p.m.) FOX 7.90 45 Scrubs NBC 7.73

46 Desperate Housewives ABC 7.72 47 Supernanny ABC 7.71 48 20/20 (10 p.m.) ABC 7.68 ER NBC 7.68 50 Law & Order: Criminal Intent NBC 7.41

51 "A Year Without Santa Claus" NBC 7.40 American Dad FOX 7.40 53 20/20 (9 p.m.) ABC 7.38 54 House (Mon., 9 p.m.) FOX 7.24 55 Cops (8:30 p.m.) FOX 6.92

56 Law & Order NBC 6.69 57 "Elf" CBS 6.59 58 Wife Swap ABC 6.56 59 La Fea Mas Bella (Wed.) UNI 6.37 60 Men in Trees ABC 6.36

America's Most Wanted FOX 6.36 62 House (Mon., 8 p.m.) FOX 6.34 63 Show Me the Money ABC 6.32 64 America's Funniest Home Videos (Fri.) ABC 6.24 65 La Fea Mas Bella (Thu.) UNI 6.17

66 Bones (9 p.m.) FOX 6.13 67 30 Rock NBC 5.94 68 Cops FOX 5.93 69 La Fea Mas Bella (Fri.) UNI 5.75 70 Friday Night Lights NBC 5.66

71 La Fea Mas Bella (Tue.) UNI 5.58 72 La Fea Mas Bella (Mon.) UNI 5.55 73 "It's a Wonderful Life" NBC 5.37 74 Standoff FOX 5.11 75 48 Hours Mystery CBS 4.81

76 Big Day ABC 4.77 77 What About Brian ABC 4.73 78 Wonderful World of Disney: "Finding Nemo" ABC 4.64 79 Til Death FOX 4.61 80 Football Night in America, Part 2 NBC 4.53

81 Friday Night Smackdown CW 4.50 82 Primetime ABC 4.35 83 Mundo de Fieras (Thu.) UNI 4.32 84 The O.C. FOX 4.25 85 War at Home FOX 4.19

86 Mundo de Fieras (Wed.) UNI 3.96 87 Day Break ABC 3.94 88 Justice FOX 3.91 89 Mundo de Fieras (Fri.) UNI 3.69 90 Mundo de Fieras (Mon.) UNI 3.59

91 Help Me Help You ABC 3.54 92 Ugly Betty (Sat.) ABC 3.52 93 Reba (7:30 p.m.) CW 3.47 94 Trading Spouses FOX 3.44 Mundo de Fieras (Tue.) UNI 3.44

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