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September 22, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

The debut of Simon Cowell’s The X Factor on Fox Wednesday night attracted an average of 12.14 million viewers. That was good enough to win the first hour at 8:00 p.m. and to rank second in the second hour with 12.56 million viewers. (It was beaten in that hour by ABC’s Modern Family, which registered 14.29 million viewers, the highest-rated show of the night.) Anther disappointment: CBS’s CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, which made its season debut with Ted Danson in the starring role with 12.59 million viewers. In 2008, the drama debuted with 23.5 million viewers; in 2009, 15.7 million; last year (with Justin Bieber), 14.6 million. Critical reaction to X Factor may have brought Cheryl Cole, who was sensationally fired from the show during the early auditions, some schadenfreude. Cole, who appeared in the first half of Wednesday night’s show (taped before she was axed), was regarded as a stronger personality than Nicole Scherzinger of Pussycat Dolls, who replaced her. “It’s a downgrade,” said Neil Glenzinger, the New York Times‘s TV critic, whose comment was typical of most critics’. Scherzinger, he wrote, was “not much more than a seat warmer.”