Veteran CBS dramas outdraw football in ratings

AP News
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 4:56 PM

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A stalwart pair of CBS series proved more enticing to viewers than an unsuspenseful Steelers-Bengals football game.

"NCIS" and "The Big Bang Theory" topped the Nielsen ratings last week, pushing the typically strong "NBC Sunday Night Football" into third place.

NBC, which had triumphed the previous week with top-rated NFL football and a live broadcast of "The Sound of Music," played runner-up to CBS this time around. A big early lead by Pittsburgh in its 30-20 victory over Cincinnati in their Sunday matchup didn't help.

What ABC touted as the "winter finale" of "Scandal" — code for bid goodbye to the drama until the new year — was a winner. It jumped by more than a third in total viewers and adults 18 to 49 compared to last year, and was in last week's top 10 in that young adult demographic.

CBS averaged 9.3 million viewers in prime time, followed by NBC with 7.5 million. Fox had 6.1 million, ABC had 5.6 million, Univision had 2.6 million and CW had 1.3 million. Telemundo had 1.4 million and ION Television had 1.35 million.

NBC's "Nightly News" topped the evening newscasts with an average of 9.3 million viewers. ABC's "World News" was second with 8.3 million and the "CBS Evening News" had 7.4 million viewers.

For the week of Dec. 9-15, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: "NCIS," CBS, 19.3 million; "The Big Bang Theory," CBS, 17.7 million; "NBC Sunday Night Football: Cincinnati at Pittsburgh," NBC, 16.4 million; "NFL Regular Season: Chicago at Dallas," ESPN, 16.2 million; "The OT," Fox, 15.8 million; "NCIS: Los Angeles," CBS, 15.2 million; "Sunday Night NFL Pre-Kick," NBC, 13.3 million; "The Voice" (Monday), NBC, 13.2 million; "The Voice" (Tuesday), NBC, 11.5 million; "Criminal Minds," CBS, 11.2 million.

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ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Co. CBS is owned by CBS Corp. CW is a joint venture of Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corp. Fox is owned by 21st Century Fox. NBC and Telemundo are owned by Comcast Corp. ION Television is owned by ION Media Networks.