TV Ratings: Solid ‘Sunshine’ premiere, but ‘Idol’ and FOX rule Wednesday

Fast National ratings for Wednesday, February 9, 2011.
Down from last Wednesday, but not in a dramatic way, “American Idol” still ruled over the competition and pushed FOX to nightly ratings wins, despite another poor audience hold from “Human Target.”
Meanwhile, it was a big week for “Human Target” and “Modern Family,” a solid bounce-back for “Blue Bloods” and an encouraging series premiere for “Mr. Sunshine.”
Among adults 18-49, FOX averaged a 5.3 rating, far ahead of the 2.8 rating for ABC, CBS’ 2.3 rating and NBC’s 2.1 rating in the coveted demographic. The CW’s 0.4 rating trailed.
Overall, FOX averaged an estimated 15.985 million viewers and an 8.8 rating/14 share, with CBS’ 6.5/10 and 10.53 million viewers a distant second. ABC’s 5.1/8 and 8.4 million viewers finished third, beating the 4.0/6 and 6.74 million for NBC. The CW was last with a 0.8/1 and 1.28 million viewers.
8 p.m. – “American Idol” started primetime in first for FOX with 23.67 million viewers and an 8.3 rating among adults 18-49. ABC was far back in second with “The Middle” (8.84 million and a 2.6 demo) and “Better with You” (6.78 million and a 2.0 demo). CBS finished third overall with the 4.81 million viewers for “Live to Dance,” which limped to a 0.9 demo rating in its season (series) finale. NBC’s “Minute to Win It” was a close fourth with 4.78 million viewers and beat CBS in the key demo. The CW’s “Nikita” repeat was fifth with 1.565 million viewers.
9 p.m. – CBS moved into first overall in the 9 p.m. hour with the 14.32 million viewers for “Criminal Minds,” which was a solid second with a 3.7 demo rating. ABC was second overall with “Modern Family” (13.1 million viewers and a 5.0 demo) and the “Mr. Sunshine” premiere (10.565 million and a 3.7 demo rating), which at least for one week exceeded the “Cougar Town” retention. FOX’s “Human Target” took that “Idol” lead-in and fell to 8.3 million viewers and a 2.4 demo. NBC’s “Minute to Win It” was fourth with 7.36 million viewers. The CW’s “Vampire Diaries” repeat averaged 988,000 viewers in fifth.
10 p.m. – “Blue Bloods” won the 10 p.m. hour overall with 12.45 million viewers and finished a respectable second with a 2.3 demo rating, markedly up from last week. NBC’s “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” was second overall with 8.09 million viewers and won the hour in the key demo with a 2.6 rating. ABC’s “Off the Map” averaged 5.56 million viewers and a 1.9 demo rating, slightly up from last week.
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change.