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Prime-time Tv Rankings

'NCIS' franchise packs 1-2 punch, lifting CBS

September 30, 2009|City News Service

A record audience for "NCIS" and a second-place finish by its spinoff, "NCIS: Los Angeles," which followed, helped CBS end ABC's two-year winning streak for television's premiere week.

CBS had nine of the 15 most-watched prime-time programs from Sept. 21 through Sunday and averaged 11.77 million viewers for its prime-time programming, becoming the only network to record an increase in viewership over last season's premiere week, according to figures released Tuesday by the Nielsen Co.

The seventh-season premiere of "NCIS" was the week's most-watched program, averaging a series-high 20.6 million viewers. "NCIS: Los Angeles" was second for the week, with 18.73 million viewers. CBS also had the week's second most-watched premiere, the Julianna Margulies-starring legal drama, "The Good Wife," which won its 10-11 p.m. Tuesday time period and finished 15th for the week with 13.71 million viewers.

While CBS' viewership was up 4% over last year's premiere week, ABC was down 10%, in large measure because of declining viewership for "Dancing With the Stars." "Dancing's" two-hour season premiere was third for the week with 17.79 million, 16% less than the 21.25 million for last season's premiere.

The two-hour Tuesday episode was ninth for the week with 15.37 million, a 16% decrease from the 18.3 million who watched the similar episode last season. Wednesday's hourlong results show was 10th for the week, with 15.36 million, 3% less than the 15.87 million who watched last season's premiere week results show. Despite the declines, both the Monday and Wednesday episodes won their time slots.

ABC was second for the week with 11.04 million viewers, its largest audience since last year's premiere week, outside of Academy Awards week. It received strong showings from new series "Modern Family" and "FlashForward." "Modern Family" was the week's most-watched new comedy, winning its 9-9:30 p.m. Wednesday time slot and finishing 20th for the week with 12.60 million viewers, ABC's largest audience in the time period since Sept. 26, 2007.

Here are the rankings for national prime-time network television last week (Sept. 21-27) as compiled by the Nielsen Co. They are based on the average number of people who watched a program from start to finish. Nielsen estimates there are 286 million potential viewers in the U.S. ages 2 and older. Viewership is listed in millions.

*--* -- Program Network Viewers *--*

*--* 1 NCIS CBS 20.60 2 NCIS: Los Angeles CBS 18.73 3 Dancing With the Stars ABC 17.79 4 NFL Football: Indianapolis vs. Arizona NBC 17.47 5 House FOX 17.16 *--*

*--* 6 Grey's Anatomy (Thu., 9 p.m.) ABC 17.03 7 CSI CBS 16.01 8 Criminal Minds CBS 15.84 9 Dancing With the Stars (Tue.) ABC 15.37 10 Dancing With the Stars (results) ABC 15.36 *--*

*--* 11 The Mentalist CBS 15.07 12 CSI: NY CBS 15.06 13 60 Minutes CBS 14.88 14 CSI: Miami CBS 14.19 15 The Good Wife CBS 13.71 *--*

*--* 16 Desperate Housewives ABC 13.64 17 Two and a Half Men CBS 13.63 18 NFL Pregame (Sun.) NBC 13.35 19 The Big Bang Theory CBS 12.96 20 Modern Family ABC 12.60 *--*

*--* 21 FlashForward ABC 12.47 22 Survivor: Samoa CBS 11.66 23 Cougar Town ABC 11.28 24 Extreme Makeover: Home ABC 10.42 -- Edition (8 p.m.) 25 The Amazing Race CBS 10.40 *--*

*--* 26 Family Guy FOX 10.10 27 Football Night America (Part 3) NBC 9.59 28 The Forgotten ABC 9.54 29 The Cleveland Show FOX 9.51 30 Brothers & Sisters ABC 9.38 *--*

*--* 31 Castle ABC 9.26 32 Cold Case CBS 9.19 33 Bones FOX 9.11 34 How I Met Your Mother CBS 9.08 35 Accidentally on Purpose CBS 8.91 *--*

*--* 36 Medium CBS 8.87 37 Ghost Whisperer CBS 8.76 38 Eastwick ABC 8.50 39 Mercy NBC 8.38 40 Law & Order: SVU NBC 8.36 *--*

*--* 41 The Simpsons FOX 8.31 42 Numb3rs CBS 8.10 43 The Biggest Loser NBC 7.55 44 The Office NBC 7.46 45 20/20 (Fri.) ABC 7.33 *--*

*--* 46 Extreme Makeover: Home ABC 7.19 -- Edition (7 p.m.) 47 The New Adventures of Old Christine CBS 7.17 48 American Dad FOX 7.14 49 Hell's Kitchen (Tue., 9 p.m.) FOX 6.98 50 The Jay Leno Show (Tue.) NBC 6.91 *--*

*--* 51 Gary Unmarried CBS 6.86 52 Hell's Kitchen FOX 6.78 53 Football Night America (Part 2) NBC 6.75 54 Glee FOX 6.64 55 48 Hours Mystery CBS 6.54 *--*

*--* 56 College football: Iowa vs. Penn State ABC 6.39 57 The Jay Leno Show (Wed.) NBC 6.38 58 Manana Es Para Siempre (Wed.) UNI 6.28 59 Law & Order NBC 6.25 60 Heroes NBC 6.10 *--*

*--* 61 Dateline (Fri.) NBC 5.99 62 Manana Es Para Siempre (Thu.) UNI 5.88 63 The Jay Leno Show (Mon.) NBC 5.81 64 The Jay Leno Show (Fri.) NBC 5.79 65 Manana Es Para Siempre (Tue.) UNI 5.78 *--*

*--* 66 Fringe FOX 5.73 67 Manana Es Para Siempre (Mon.) UNI 5.71 68 So You Think Can Dance (Wed.) FOX 5.50 69 Community NBC 5.39 70 Manana Es Para Siempre (Fri.) UNI 5.34 *--*

*--* 71 Jay Leno Show (Thu.) NBC 5.13 72 Law & Order: SVU (Sat.) NBC 5.10 73 Crimetime Saturday CBS 4.99 74 America's Most Wanted: FOX 4.89 -- America Fights Back 75 College Football Pregame (Sat.) ABC 4.75 *--*

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