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December 29, 2011 by · 2 Comments 

The week before Christmas featured nearly as many reruns on primetime TV as a typical week in midsummer — with commensurate low ratings. There were a few exceptions. A repeat of CBS’s NCIS drew 12.4 million viewers to finish in third place behind NBC’s Sunday Night Football telecast (Chicago vs. Green Bay) with 24 million viewers and the pregame show with 18.7 million. And a repeat of the companion show, NCIS: Los Angeles attracted 11.4 million. While those numbers were better-than-decent, they were well off their usual marks. And a rerun of Two and a Half Men, a show that ordinarily attracts an audience of 15-19 million, pulled in only 7.9 million and failed to make the top ten. The nightly news race turned out to be tighter than usual. NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams once again took the lead with 8.6 million viewers, but ABC World News with Diane Sawyer was hot on its heals with 8.2 million. And the CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley continued to pick up viewers as it averaged 6.4 million. For the week, CBS once again led among total adults with an average 4.4 rating and an 8 share. NBC came in second with a 4.0/7. Fox placed third with a 3.2/6, while ABC landed in last place with a 2.6/5.

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

1. Sunday Night Football, NBC, 12.6/24; 2. Sunday Night NFL Pre-Kickoff, NBC, 9.6/20; 3. NCIS, CBS, 7.8/13; 4. Football Night in America Pt. 3, NBC, 7.5/16; 5. NCIS: Los Angeles, CBS, 7.2/12; 6. The X Factor (Thursday), Fox, 7.1/12; 7. The X Factor (Wednesday), Fox, 6.4/11; 8. The Big Bang Theory, CBS, 5.7/10; 9. The Mentalist, CBS, 5.4/9; 10. Unforgettable, CBS, 5.2/9.