‘Desperate Housewives’ surge as ‘Brothers & Sisters’ goes #2


Up Week to Week, ABC Continues to Beat its Non-Sports Sunday Competition

Sunday’s No. 1 Non-Sports TV Show, “Housewives” Grows Week to Week In Viewers and Young Adults, Matching its Largest Overall Audience this Season

Hitting Season-Highs, ABC’s “Brothers & Sisters” Generates the Series’ Biggest Audience and Highest Adult 18-49 Number in 9 Months

Sunday Night (7:00-11:00 p.m.)
Opposite NFL driven NBC (Vikings-Cardinals) and Fox (Cowboys-Giants primetime overrun), ABC once again beat out its non-sports boosted competition on Sunday, topping CBS’ Sunday line-up by 7% in Total Viewers (11.0 million vs. 10.3 million) and by 42% in Adults18-49 (3.4/8 vs. 2.4/6).  

Despite the increased week-to-week competition, ABC was up over the prior Sunday by 1 million viewers and by 10% in Adults 18-49 (10.0 million and 3.1/8 on 11/29/09).

“Desperate Housewives” (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
TV’s No. 1 non-sports program on Sunday, ABC’s “Desperate Housewives’” numbers grew from the prior week by nearly 2.0 million viewers (14.7 million vs. 12.8 million) and by 9% in Adults 18-49 (4.8/11 vs. 4.4/10).  In fact, Housewives tied its biggest overall audience this season. 

“Housewives” registered as the night’s most-watched entertainment series for its 10th straight telecast this season, while standing as Sunday’s No. 1 series for 8 consecutive airings with Adults 18-49.  

“Housewives” is generating an even bigger increase this season than last over its first-reported numbers through DVR playback, picking up an average 1.7 million viewers and an additional 8-tenths of an Adult 18-49 rating point from the initially reported Live + Same Day Numbers to the Live + 7 Day DVR finals.     

“Brothers & Sisters” (10:00-11:00 p.m.)
ABC’s “Brothers & Sisters” placed a strong second in the 10 o’clock hour to NBC’s NFL game, topping its CBS competition (“NCIS: LA” encore) by 3.6 million viewers (10.9 million vs. 7.3 million) and by 131% (3.7/9 vs. 1.6/4).

Hitting season-highs and jumping week to week by 2.2 million viewers (10.9 million vs. 8.7 million) and by 28% in Adults 18-49 (3.7/9 vs. 2.9/8), ABC’s “Brothers & Sisters” achieved the series’ strongest numbers in 9 months on both counts – since 3/1/09.
Like its lead-in, “Brothers & Sisters” is seeing a sizeable uptick this season over its first-reported numbers through DVR playback (also bigger than last season), picking up an average 1.3 million viewers and an additional 5-tenths of an Adult 18-49 rating point from the initially reported Live + Same Day Numbers to the Live + 7 Day DVR finals.     

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 33% currently, from 28% at the same point in 2008. 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: data and information provided by ABC. – Nielsen Media Research (Fast Affiliate, Live + Same Day Ratings), 12/6/09.  DVR Playback = 9/21-11/15/09.)