'Idol' tops Thursday; 'Parks' returns to series high

Michael Becker / Fox

Night 2 of Fox’s American Idol took an expected ratings hit as the reality show dove into tougher competition on its new night.

The one-hour Idol was seen by 22.9 million viewers and drew a 7.8 adults 18-49 rating — down 20 percent from its Wednesday premiere and dropping 23 percent from its second episode last year. Idol then boosted Bones (10.9 million, 3.6).

Meanwhile, CBS and NBC breathed a big sigh of relief since most of their comedies held up well against TV’s toughest competition, with the time-period premiere of the Peacock’s new Olivia Munn sitcom improving greatly on its December preview.

Big Bang Theory (13.6 million, 4.2) and $#*! My Dad Says (10.3 million, 2.7) were both only two-tenths away from last week’s adult demo rating. Insiders expected Big Bang to hold up fine, but the surprise here is that more CBS viewers didn’t flip the channel to Fox at 8:30 p.m.

Last night marked the debut of NBC airing a whopping three hours of comedy originals. (The network has been running repeats in the 10 p.m. hour as a warm-up.) So how that work out for them? Pretty good, actually.

NBC’s Community (4.7 million, 2.2) matched its season high. Munn’s Perfect Couples (4.2 million, 2.1), while not exactly impressing as a quasi-premiere rating on a Thursday night, was nonetheless up 62 percent from last month’s holiday week preview.

At 9 p.m., The Office (8.3 million, 4.5) hit a season high. Then the return of Parks and Recreation (6.2 million, 3.2) hit a series high — and definitely improved on the usual performance of Outsourced in the slot. At 10 p.m., 30 Rock (5.3 million, 2.7) improved its half hour. The only bummer in the lineup was Outsourced (4.0 million, 1.8), which fell notably at 10:30 p.m. from its lead-in.

Also Thursday, CSI (14.3 million, 3.1) and The Mentalist (14.7 million, 2.8). ABC had Wipeout (8.3 million, 2.6) and repeats.

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  • Strepsi

    PERFECT COUPLES was intermittently amusing, shrill, and disjointed. These couples are in different sitcoms from each other! Kyle Bornheimer was likable as always and contributed most of the actual comedy. He was the MVP.

    David Walton is cute but employs the same volume and subtlety as Axl on “The Middle” — which is off-putting for an adult human. He and Mary Elizabeth Ellis could evolve into funny, but right now they are in another, LOUDER universe.

    Hayes macArthur and Olivia Munn were mainly just weird — like fantastic recurring characters, but difficult to relate to or like as leads.

    Recommendation: keep Kyle and Christine Woods as the main characters, and reduce the screen time (and shrillness) of the other 2, and add more, you know, jokes.

    • LOL

      How in the world does something like Wipeout outperform the NBC shows? America loves crap.

  • dublin

    Funny since AI didn’t make the DVR cut for us. It was all about NBC & Big Bang Theory

  • Cindi

    We now have to watch Community live on a different TV while Wipeout and BBT record. First world problems, I know. Sorry Idol: no room on the DVR for you.

  • Cimo

    Fantastic ratings for Parks & Rec. Hope they maintain, but at that level looks like a really good bet for Season 4.

  • ruth

    I watched bbt and #*$ my dad says, and taped AI its that easy. if i had to chose, I would watch BBT

  • lynn

    I like the new panel on American idol and will continue to watch

  • Mike

    WIN FOR PARKS AND REC!!! That is tremendous news, and hopefully they do nothing but build on a great season premiere!

  • Liz

    Nice to have American Idol and Bones back-to-back again, if just for nostalgia’s sake.

  • girlonline

    The “new” “American Idol” is worse than bad — it’s boring. What a snoozefest.

    • Rida

      like Matt” audition artclie but many of them had receive their chance from agents and sheila found it on Craig’s list. Jeff had an agent also. And so did the crazy girl from Washington DC I loved Jeff and even more whenhe hooked up with Jordan.

  • Jamie

    So happy for Parks and Rec! Love that show!

    • pam

      I agree! I’m happy that viewership is increasing!

  • PM

    I believe that 19, 20 to 22 million range is what Idol might get this season. This is the same as what they had on the April to May shows.

    • yes

      i think you’re right, and that sure is no reason for idol to panic, those are decent numbers for a 10-year old show that went through some pretty big changes. even more impressive is that it’s a music reality show. music has changed ALOT in 10 years, so that’s a feat in itself.

      • FromChicago

        Totally agree. It’s 10 yrs old folks….give it a break.

    • Marcela

      the mountain of pischyal and video evidence supporting CD. There is no mountain. NEWTON He identified these little things called THE LAWS OF PHYSICS one of the first was called I’ll say it slowly The conservation of ENERGY He was kind of a stickler about it! Newton’s first law is the law of inertia, you are thinking of the first law of thermodynamics which is not broken here so I don’t know why you are bringing it up.

  • sara

    i watched the big band theory @#$% my dad said i love those shows

  • Alan

    Wow, nice improvement EW. You took my advice, ha ha! Won’t have to visit tvbythenumbers anymore.

  • Jona-Beth

    I wish the other networks had some good cop dramas on…had to go to other channels to get those better shows…..

  • AndyLuvr

    Thrilled for PARKS AND REC!!! Feel vindicated/justified at my dislike/hatred of OUTSOURCED.

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