NBC will win the 2013-14 NBC20TV season in the demo for the first time in a decade with a 13% ratings spike – the biggest year-to-year gain for any Big 4 network in nine years. Even without its 18 nights of Sochi Olympics coverage, NBC boasts it delivers the season’s biggest demo audience, topping Super Bowl-boosted Fox. NBC’s gains blanket the entire week, including double-digit year-to-year demo gains on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.

The network’s most talked about improvement: its 39% gain at 10 PM Mondays with The Blacklist originals – Blacklist being the season’s No. 1 new series and No. 2 drama, and NBC’s Monday being the top-rated regular schedule on any broadcast network in the demo, with an average 4.3 rating for regular programming.

abclogo1NBC takes the season’s top spot with a 2.7 demo rating, besting Fox’s 2.5, and CBS’s 2.4; ABC brings up the rear with a 2.1 rating. ABC is down 5% compared to last year’s 2.2 rating, but CBS, which finished first in the demo last season, slid 17% year to year. Fox came in on par with last season.

CBS, meanwhile, takes the crown as the country’s mostcbs-logowatched network for the sixth consecutive year (and 11 of the last 12 seasons) with 10.733 million viewers to NBC’s 9.279 million, ABC’s 7.591 million and Fox’s 7.352 million.

CBSviewer
5 months
FOX beat CBS only because it had the SuperBowl. All their Shows (except The Simpsons and Family...
Dav
5 months
Advertisers chase the demo and are willing to pay more money to reach it. So yes, winning...
bjssp
5 months
At first I was skeptical, but now it makes a lot of sense. It keeps the show...

But NBC wins for Most Improved in overall audience, with a 33% gain (compared to last season’s 6.963 million viewers) — the biggest jump for any network in a quarter of a century, when Fox skyrocketed by 46% in the 1988-89 TV season. NBC’s No. 2 finish in overall crowd (which it achieves with or without Olympics added in) is something to celebrate – being the network’s first non-fourth-place-finish in a decade. While Monday was a big story this season for NBC in a good way, it was a big story for CBS too, only one the network would rather forget. We Are Men at 8:30 disappeared quickly, taking with it the network’s comedy-block momentum. And at 10 PM, Hostages and Intelligence – CBS’s most un-CBS-like dramas, shriveled and died against NBC’s most CBS-like drama – the procedural crime drama The Blacklist.

Fox_Broadcasting_Company111004142957-200x101__140124200121-1__140520170726Fox, meanwhile, finished No. 4 in overall audience, but is up 4% from last season’s 7.059 million. Fox was the setting for one of this season’s bigger stories: singing-competition meltdown. In the fall, The X Factor withered and died, despite Simon Cowell’s latest can’t-miss judge-panel revamp. More recently, American Idol’s bid to win back viewers with a kinder gentler celebrity judge panel of Keith Urban, JLo and Harry Connick Jr. has failed to stem audience loss.

This season’s total-viewer frontrunner CBS dropped 9% this season compared to last season’s 11.857 million viewers – which can be attributed in some measure to CBS having last year had the Super Bowl and the AFC Championship game in primetime (this year, Fox got the Super Bowl and the NFC Championship game in prime). ABC dropped 3% from last season’s 7.864 million. In its end-of-season talking points, CBS points with pride to its comedy success – the net’s total-viewer win includes 8 of the Top 10 comedies in viewers (and 7 of the Top 10 in the demo), with The Big Bang Theory finishing the season as the No. 1 scripted series in total viewers, in the demo, and in other key age brackets, like 18-34.

In the demo, the Top 20 programs (excluding pre-and-post-football programs) were:

1)    Sunday Night Football (NBC)

2)    The Big Bang Theory (CBS)

3)    The Voice (NBC)

4)    Modern Family (ABC)

5)    Grey’s Anatomy (ABC)

6)    The Blacklist (NBC)

7)    How I Met Your Mother (CBS)

8)    The Voice – Tues (NBC)

9)    Scandal (ABC)

10)   Resurrection (ABC)

11)   Criminal Minds (CBS)

12)   NCIS (CBS)

13)   Once Upon a Time (ABC)

14)   American Idol – Wed (Fox)

15)   Sleepy Hollow (Fox)

16)   American Idol – Thurs (Fox)

17)   2 Broke Girls (CBS)

18)   Survivor (CBS)

19)   The Bachelor (ABC)

20)   Marvel’s Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC)

In Total Viewers,  NBC’s Sunday Night Football also is the season’s No. 1 ranked series:

1)    Sunday Night Football (NBC)

2)    The Big Bang Theory (CBS)

3)    NCIS (CBS)

4)    NCIS: LA (CBS)

5)    Dancing With the Stars (ABC)

6)    The Blacklist (NBC)

7)    The Voice (NBC)

8)    Person of Interest (CBS)

9)    The Voice – Tues (NBC)

10)   Blue Bloods (CBS)

11)   Resurrection (ABC)

12)   Criminal Minds (CBS)

13)   Castle (ABC)

14)   60 Minutes (CBS)

15)   Grey’s Anatomy (ABC)

16)   American Idol – Wed (Fox)

17)   Scandal (ABC)

18)   CSI (CBS)

19)   Modern Family (ABC)

20)   Elementary (CBS)