NBC opened weak ended strong w/ ‘Law & Order: SVU’, ‘Leno’ king of Late-Night


At 8 p.m. ET, an encore telecast of “Minute To Win It” delivered a 1.6/6 in adults 18-49 and 5.5 million viewers overall.  “Minute To Win It” finished within 0.2 of a rating point of the time-period lead in adults 18-49 and is #2 or tied for #2 among the major networks in adults 18-34, women 18-34 and all key adult-male demos.  From its first half-hour to its second, “Minute To Win It” increased by 20 percent in adults 18-49 (to a 1.8 rating from a 1.5) and 9 percent in total viewers (5.7 million vs. 5.3 million). 

At 9 p.m. ET, “Mercy” averaged a 1.0/3 in adults 18-49 and 4.0 million viewers overall.

At 10 p.m. ET, “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (2.6/8 in adults 18-49, 8.3 million viewers overall) won the time period in adults 18-49 and other key ratings categories versus the original drama competition of CBS’s “CSI:NY” and ABC’s “Happy Town.”   From its first half-hour to its second, “Law & Order: SVU” increased its adult 18-49 rating by 15 percent (to a 2.8 rating from a 2.3) and its overall viewership by 15 percent or nearly 1.2 million persons (to 8.8 million from 7.7 million) while the competition on ABC and CBS declined half-hour to half-hour in both categories.  This week’s “SVU” is up 24 percent versus NBC’s 2.1 average in this slot for the traditional 2008-09 season (“live plus same day”).  In total viewers, “SVU” was up 17 percent or more than 1.2 million persons versus NBC’s 7.032 million average in the hour during the traditional ’08-09 season.

This marks the ninth consecutive time a “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” original has ranked #1 or tied for #1 among regular programs in this time period in 18-49. 

In the 10:30 lead-in to local news, “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” captured a 10 percent margin of victory in the key news demographic of adults 25-54 (with a 3.3 rating vs. a 3.0 for CBS’s second-place “CSI: NY”), reversing an 18 percent margin the prior half-hour for “CSI: NY” (2.8 vs. 3.3).   “Law & Order: SVU” won the 10:30 half-hour in every key ratings demographic and beat the combined ABC-CBS competition in adults, men and women 18-34.

In Late-Night Metered Markets Wednesday night:

In Nielsen’s 56 metered markets, household results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 3.1/8; CBS’s “Late Show with David Letterman,” 3.2/8; and ABC’s “Nightline,” 2.9/7; and “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” 1.3/4. 

In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 1.1/5; “Late Show,” 1.0/5; “Nightline,” 1.2/5; and “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” 0.6/3.

At 12:35 a.m., “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” (1.3/5 in metered-market households) trailed CBS’s “Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” (1.6/6).  In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, “Late Night” (0.6/4 in 18-49) tied “Late Late Show” (0.6/4).

At 1:35 a.m., “Last Call with Carson Daly” averaged a 0.8/3 in metered-market households and a 0.4/3 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters.

NOTE: All national and metered-market ratings are “live plus same day” from Nielsen Media Research unless otherwise indicated.   

(source: NBC)