Whether or not Jermaine Jones' American Idol disqualification was a ratings ploy all along, it didn't do much to lift the show's numbers.
Wednesday's two-hour episode — which teased Jones' dismissal for concealing a criminal past at the start before showing the pre-taped footage more than an hour later — drew 17.9 million viewers and a 5.3 rating in the adults 18-to-49 demographic, down slightly from last week. The show, however, easily won the night that saw most series take big hits.
Did Idol go too far?
On ABC, The Middle (7 million, 2.1), Suburgatory (6.3 million, 2.1) and Modern Family (10.5 million, 4.4) all returned to season lows. On the other hand, Happy Endings (5.5 million, 2.4), which has been airing new episodes while its lead-ins took a breather, rose 20 percent in the demo. CSI (11.5 million, 2.7) was the only other show to improve on its last fresh outing.
Hitting series lows were Criminal Minds (11.3 million, 2.8) and NBC's whole slate, Whitney (4 million, 1.4), Are You There, Chelsea? (2.9 million, 1.0) and Rock Center with Brian Williams (2.6 million, 0.6).
CBS: Survivor: One World 10.3 million viewers (2.9 demo rating)
ABC: The Middle 7 million (2.1); Suburgatory 6.3 million (2.1)
Fox: American Idol 17.9 million (5.3) [8-10 p.m.]
NBC: Whitney 4 million (1.4); Are You There, Chelsea? 2.9 million (1.0)
CW: One Tree Hill 1.5 million (0.7)
CBS: Criminal Minds 11.3 million (2.8)
ABC: Modern Family 10.5 million (4.4); Happy Endings 5.5 million (2.4)
NBC: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (R) 2.5 million (0.7)
CW: America's Next Top Model 1.04 million (0.5)
CBS: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation 11.5 million (2.7)
ABC: Revenge for Real 4.45 million (1.2)
NBC: Rock Center with Brian Williams 2.6 million (0.6)