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March 16, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

As far as the TV networks are concerned, March did not come in like a lion. With the exception of Fox, which continued to record huge ratings for American Idol (24 million viewers on Wednesday, 22 million on Thursday) despite the absence of Simon Cowell, ratings were down significantly from a year ago. Fox also scored strongly with Glee and House among the key 18-49 demographic, giving it wins on five days of the week in that demo. Among total adults, however, CBS continued to hold a small lead as it averaged a 6.0 rating and a 10 share. Fox came in second with a 5.6/9. ABC placed third with a 3.4/6, while NBC trailed with a 3.3/6. As for the nightly newscasts, the Japanese earthquake and tsunami disasters came too late in the week to substantially affect ratings — although all of the newscasts ticked upwards. NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams finished first with 9.6 million viewers. ABC World News with Diane Sawyer remained in second place with 8.3 million viewers, while the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric remained in third with 6.2 million.

The top ten shows of the week according to Nielsen Research:

1. American Idol (Wednesday), Fox, 13.5/22; 2. American Idol (Thursday), Fox, 12.6/20; 3. The Mentalist, CBS, 8.9/16; 4. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CBS, 8.4/14; 5. NCIS, CBS, 8.3/14; 5. NCIS: Los Angeles, CBS, 8.3/14; 7. The Big Bang Theory, CBS, 7.3/12; 8. Blue Bloods, CBS, 7.1/13; 9. (Tie) CSI: Miami, CBS, 7.0/12; 9. (Tie) Glee, Fox, 7.0/11.