ABC grows Thursday 3rd week, “Grey’s Anatomy” Leads the 9pm


Growing its Audience for the 3rd Straight Week, ABC Marks its Most-Watched Thursday in 6 Weeks. “Grey’s” Leads the 9pm Hour Among Adults 18-49, Generating its Most-Watched Telecast Since March. With its Biggest Overall Audience in 6 Weeks, “Private Practice” Dominates In Adults 18-34, as the Hour’s No. 1 Scripted Show for its 20th Straight Original.

Thursday Night (8:00-11:00 p.m.)
ABC took second place on Thursday in Total Viewers (7.9 million) and Adults 18-49 (2.6/8), while dominating the night for the 2nd straight week with Women 18-34, by 32% over its nearest competition (3.3/11 vs. 2.5/8 – NBC). 

Growing on the night for the 3rd straight week, ABC generated its largest Thursday audience in 6 weeks – since 3/25/10.

“Grey’s Anatomy” (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Surging 185% over its lead-in at 9:00p.m., self-starter “Grey’s Anatomy” won its hour by strong margins among Adults 18-49.  During the 9 o’clock hour, ABC’s “Grey’s” (3.7/11) outdelivered CBS’ “CSI” by 19% (3.1/9), NBC’s comedies by 19% (“The Office”/”30 Rock” = 3.1/9) and Fox’s “Fringe” by 68% (2.2/6).  Grey’s tallied its 19th time in 20 original broadcasts this season to qualify as Thursday’s No. 1 scripted series with Adults 18-49. 

Up over the prior week, “Grey’s” generated its most-watched telecast (10.7 million) since March – since 3/25/10. 

“Private Practice” (10:00-11:00 p.m.)
ABC’s Private Practice placed a solid second to CBS’ “The Mentalist” in 10 o’clock hour among Total Viewers (8.3 million) and Adults 18-49 (2.8/8), topping NBC’s “Marriage Ref” (5.0 million and 2.2/6) by 3.3 million viewers and by 27% in young adults, respectively.  The ABC drama dominated the hour with Adults 18-34 (2.5/8), beating “The Mentalist” by 39% (1.8/6) and “Marriage Ref” by 32% (1.9/6).   It was the 20th straight original telecast this season for “Private Practice” to stand as the No. 1 scripted program in the hour with Adults 18-34 and key Women (W18-34/W18-49). 

Increasing its overall audience week to week, “Private Practice” drew its biggest audience in 6 weeks – since 3/25/10. 

A note about increasing DVR penetration and year-to-year rating comparisons: Year-to-year rating comparisons based on the Live + Same Day data stream are distorted by the level of DVR penetration in the Nielsen sample, which has jumped up to 36% currently, from 31% at the same point in 2009.  More viewers are watching shows on their own timetables, which may not be reflected in the overnight next day numbers. The only truly valid year-to-year comparison would be one based on the Live + 7 Day metric, once those stats are released by Nielsen.

(Source: ABC – The Nielsen Company (Fast Affiliate, Live + Same Day Ratings), 5/6/10.)