January 9, 2012

The Sked: Estimated Weekly Prime Ratings — January 2-8

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Written by: Mitch Salem
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>Pending updates from the official national ratings for the weekend, we expect CBS to win the week of January 2-8, 2012 comfortably.  NBC will finish in second place, thanks to a Saturday night prime time NFL playoff game, which bailed out its week.  The numbers below reflect final ratings for Monday-Thursday and adjusted fast nationals for Friday-Sunday (our estimates of what we think the NFL and other live programming will go up to in the official nationals tomorrow.)  ABC has to be disappointed by its weak third-place showing because most of its schedule was back in originals this first week in January (unlike most of the competition).  FOX, which had mostly originals, can’t be too surprised or upset — it didn’t have the NFC wild card in early Sunday prime time like it did last January, and the network will get back in gear when American Idol jump starts the schedule and ushers in original episodes of the rest of the line up later this month.

               Estimated Prime Time Weekly Averages
                 CBS    NBC    ABC    FOX    CW
Jan 2-8, 2012    3.0    2.7    2.2    1.4    0.6
Jan 3-9, 2011    2.3    3.1    2.3    2.8    —

Last year, NBC won this week with a slightly higher Saturday wild card game but mostly because of much better performance on Tuesday and Wednesday nights (with healthier Biggest Loser, Parenthood and L&O SVU franchises).  CBS benefited from having the late Sunday playoff game this year (FOX had it last year) but also had more original series on this week and fewer marginal specials (Live to Dance and People’s Choice Awards).   

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."