During prime time's first hour Tuesday, Abdul's new show bested the kick-off of The Biggest Loser: Couples, which posted an all-time series low for a midseason premiere with a 3.3 overall rating among 18-to-49-year-olds — down 28 percent from January a year ago. It had 8.3 million viewers, ahead of a fresh No Ordinary Family (6.8 million) and reruns of Glee (4.7 million) and One Tree Hill (1 million).
At 9, Loser remained second with an audience that grew to 9.2 million viewers, while the return of V pulled in 6.75 million, about the same as its season finale last May — but down substantially from its November 2009 debut. Million Dollar Money Drop continued to see its rating drop, as 3.8 million tuned in — down 24 percent from its last 9 o'clock outing — and a Life Unexpected rerun lured 827,000.
A rerun of NCIS took prime time's final hour with 10.2 million viewers; Parenthood attracted 6 million (up 21 percent from its last original episode in November) and Detroit 1-8-7 got 5.1 million (a series low 1.2 demo rating).
Now that the National Football League's regular season is over, Nielsen announced Wednesday what has been clear week in and week out: Sunday Night Football is the No. 1 show in prime time this TV season. It averaged 21.8 million viewers — up 12 percent from last year (19.4 million).
Football Night in America averaged 8.3 million viewers this season, also up 12 percent over last season (7.4 million) and its best viewership ever.
"Nearly six years ago we worked with the NFL to create Football Night in America — a night that America would reserve for football and over the five football seasons since, we have steadily built that night," said Dick Ebersol, chairman of NBC Universal's sports and Olympics coverage.