TV Ratings: It’s still a ‘Wonderful Life’ for NBC on Christmas Eve Wednesday

Fast National ratings for Wednesday, December 24, 2014.

NBC's traditional Christmas Eve broadcast of “It's a Wonderful Life” paid its usual dividends, with the Frank Capra classic dominating primetime in all measures.

“It's a Wonderful Life” was actually up from last year's broadcast, when Jimmy Stewart and company actually lost to the Jim Carrey “Grinch” among young viewers and also lost to CBS procedural repeats overall. This year, CBS aired less potent drama and “I Love Lucy” repeats, while ABC aired comedy repeats, giving the advantage to a three-hour black-and-white film.

Let's get to the numbers…

Among adults 18-49, NBC averaged a 1.2 rating for Wednesday night, comfortably tops in the key demographic. ABC averaged a 0.7 rating for second in the key demo, followed by the 0.5 key demo ratings for FOX and CBS. The CW did a 0.2 key demo rating for Wednesday.

Overall, NBC averaged an estimated 4.99 million viewers and a 2.7 rating/6 share for Wednesday night. CBS was second with a 2.2/5 and 3.41 million viewers, followed by the 1.8/4 and 2.93 million viewers for ABC. FOX's 0.8/2 and 1.29 million viewers and the 0.5/1 and 805,000 viewers for The CW trailed for Wednesday.

8 p.m. – NBC's “It's a Wonderful Life” started its sweep with 4.11 million viewers and a 1.1 rating among adults 18-49 for the 8 p.m. hour. CBS' colorized “I Love Lucy” encore averaged 3.58 million viewers and a 0.7 key demo rating, edging out the 3.07 million viewers and 0.6 key demo rating for ABC's repeats of “The Middle” and “The Goldbergs.” Two “Bob's Burgers” repeats averaged 1.39 million viewers and a 0.5 key demo rating on FOX, topping the 870,000 viewers and 0.3 key demo rating for The CW's second airing of “Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol” this winter.

9 p.m. – The second hour of “It's a Wonderful Life” rose to 4.92 million viewers and a 1.2 rating among adults 18-49 for NBC in the 9 p.m. frame. CBS' “Madam Secretary” repeat averaged 3.1 million viewers, but only a 0.4 key demo rating, compared to the 2.94 million viewers and 0.8 key demo rating for repeats of “Modern Family” and “Black-ish” on ABC. FOX's two repeats of “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” averaged 1.19 million viewers and a 0.4 key demo rating, ahead of the 740,000 viewers and 0.2 key demo rating for “Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol” and another airing of the “Madagascar” holiday special.

10 p.m. – The final hour of “It's a Wonderful Life” rose to 5.93 million viewers and a 1.4 rating among adults 18-49 for NBC. CBS' “Scorpion” repeat averaged 3.54 million viewers and a 0.5 key demo rating, compared to the 2.78 million viewers and 0.7 key demo rating for two ABC repeats of “Black-ish.”

All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change.