TV Ratings: ‘SVU’ double puts NBC ahead of CBS’ ‘Dance,’ People’s Choice on Wednesday

Fast National ratings for Wednesday, January 5, 2011. 
The second night of “Live to Dance” dropped for CBS, while NBC got strong performances from two episodes of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” to win the night overall and split with comedy-driven ABC in the all-important demographic.
For the night, ABC and NBC both averaged a 2.7 rating among adults 18-49, splitting the key demographic. CBS was a competitive third with a 2.4 rating, beating FOX’s 1.7 rating and the 0.3 rating for The CW.
Overall, NBC averaged an estimated 9.94 million viewers to go with a 5.9 rating/10 share. CBS was a close second with 8.91 million viewers and a 5.7/9. ABC’s 4.6/8 and 7.36 million viewers finished third, beating FOX’s 3.8/6 and 6.31 million viewers. The CW’s 0.7/1 and 941,000 viewers came in fifth.
8 p.m. – ABC started primetime in first with 8.38 million viewers and a strong 2.7 demo rating for “The Middle” and “Better with You.” CBS’ “Live to Dance” fell to 7.79 million viewers and a 1.8 demo rating on its second night, hardly an encouraging sign. NBC’s “Minute to Win It” averaged 6.77 million viewers, beating the 6.16 million for FOX’s “Human Target.” A repeat of “Hellcats” on The CW averaged 1.07 million viewers.
9 p.m. – NBC took over first overall in the 9 p.m. hour with 10.523 million viewers for “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” coming in second in the key demo with a 2.9 rating. CBS’ People’s Choice Awards coverage was second overall with 10.09 million viewers, coming in third in the demo. ABC was third overall and first in the key demo with “Modern Family” (11.76 million and a 4.8 demo) and “Cougar Town” (6.745 million and a 2.9 demo rating). FOX’s second “Human Target” episode was fourth with 6.46 million viewers and remained steady with a 1.7 demo rating. The CW’s repeat of “Hellcats” was fifth.
10 p.m. – A second episode of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” gave NBC an estimated 10.89 million viewers and a 3.0 demo rating. CBS’ People’s Choice coverage was second with 8.86 million viewers and a 2.7 demo rating. ABC’s “Primetime” special was third with 4.45 million viewers.
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change.