While American Idol continues to decimate its competition, it also keeps lagging behind its numbers for last season.
Wednesday's two-hour show, with the top dozen performing, averaged nearly 22.2 million viewers. It was down 9 percent from last year's comparable show among 18-to-49-year-olds, the industry's advertiser-coveted demo — but still more than the other four networks combined. It also declined 9 percent compared with last week.
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In prime time's first hour, CBS' Survivor: Redemption Island attracted 10.3 million people — which means it didn't get a lift from last week's shocking exit of Russell Hantz. And it hit a series low in the demo.
Also at 8/7c, back-to-back repeats of ABC's The Middle averaged 4.7 million viewers, while Minute to Win It won over 3.3 million on NBC and the CW's America's Next Top Model drew 2 million viewers.
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At 9/8c, 13.7 million viewers tuned in to Criminal Minds to say goodbye to cast member Paget Brewster. The new episode's audience was a healthy improvement over the 8.2 million for a rerun last week. Repeats of Modern Family and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit totaled viewerships of 5.8 million and 3.3 million, respectively, while Shedding for the Wedding attracted 1 million on the CW. At 9:30/8:30c, Mr. Sunshine tumbled to yet another series low — 4.6 million viewers.
At 10/9c, CBS' Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior rose to nearly 10.4 million viewers (up from 9.1 million last week). It won against yet another rerun of SVU (5.2 million viewers) and a first-run episode of ABC's Off the Map (4.2 million).