'Modern Family' winner Wednesday for ABC, second-place


ABC’s Wednesday is Up Year to Year for the 3rd Week in a Row, as its 8-10pm Comedy Block Surges Against Post-Season Major League Baseball Competition.

“Modern Family” is Wednesday’s No. 1 TV Show for the 5th Straight Week.

Scoring its Best Results Since its Season Opener, “The Middle” Draws the Series’  3rd-Largest Audience and Continues to Pace Well Ahead of its Year-Ago Results.

Up Week to Week, “Better with You” Equals its Biggest Audience Since its Debut.

Bettering its Year-Ago Results for the 5th Week in a Row, “Modern Family”  Generates its 3rd-Biggest Numbers Ever in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49.

Growing its Overall Audience for the 3rd Straight Week, ABC’s “Cougar Town” Continues to Rank No. 1 in its Time Slot with Adults 18-34 and Women 18-34.

On its Return, ABC’s “The Whole Truth” Hits its 2nd-Highest-Ever Numbers  In Viewers and Young Adults, While Achieving a Series-High in Men 18-49.

Wednesday Night (8:00-11:00 p.m.)
Exhibiting year-to-year improvement on Wednesday for the 3rd consecutive week (despite facing an MLB Playoff game this year), ABC was up over the year-ago night (10/21/09) by 1.0 million viewers (7.3 million vs. 6.3 million) and by 14% in Adults 18-49 (2.5/7 vs. 2.2/6).  It was the Net’s 3rd time in 3 nights this week to build its overall audience from the same night last year. 

In addition, ABC’s 8:00-10:00 p.m. comedy block surged over the same night last year by 1.6 million viewers (8.7 million vs. 7.1 million)  and by 24% in Adults 18-49 (3.1/9 vs. 2.5/7).

“The Middle” (8:00-8:30 p.m.)
Scoring its best results since its season opener (on 9/22/10), ABC’s “The Middle” continued to rank as the 2nd-most-watched TV series in the 8:00 p.m. half-hour to CBS’ “Survivor: Nicaragua,” widening its lead over NBC’s “Undercovers” to a season-best 2.8 million viewers (8.5 million vs. 5.7 million) and 86% in Adults 18-49 (2.6/8 vs. 1.4/5).  “The Middle” finished No. 1 in its half-hour with Adults 18-34 (2.2/7), tying “Survivor” for the first time. 

The sophomore comedy greatly improved its time-period for ABC from the same night last year in viewers (+2.7 million) viewers and young adults (+73%).  On average this season, “The Middle” is up from its own performance at this point last year (when it had the added advantage of airing at 8:30 p.m., with higher overall viewing levels) in both Total Viewers (+16%) and Adults 18-49 (+17%). 

Despite facing Fox’s post-season Major League Baseball Game, “The Middle” produced its 3rd-most-watched telecast ever, behind only its two season premieres.

“Better with You” (8:30-9:30 p.m.)
Building its overall audience week to week against the baseball game, “Better with You” continued to dominate its freshman competition in the half-hour among Adults 18-49, beating NBC’s “Undercovers” by 1.0 million viewers (7.0 million vs. 6.0 million) and by 40% in Adults 18-49 (2.1/6 vs. 1.5/5).
The freshman comedy improved its half-hour year to year for ABC in both Total Viewers (+8%) and Adults 18-49 (+5%).
“Better with You” equaled its biggest audience since its series debut in September – since 9/22/10. 
“Modern Family” (9:00-9:30 p.m.)
Standing as Wednesday’s dominant No. 1 TV show for the 5th week running this season, ABC’s “Modern Family” jumped into the lead at 9:00 p.m., besting second-place CBS’ “Criminal Minds” by 34% in Adults 18-49 (4.7/13 vs. 3.5/10).

“Modern Family” outdelivered its year-ago performance for the 5th week in a row this season.  On average in its sophomore season, “Modern Family’s” numbers are up over the same point last year by 2.4 million viewers and by 29% in Adults 18-49. 

“Modern Family” posted the series’ 3rd-highest-ever numbers in viewers (11.9 million) and young adults (4.7/13).

“Cougar Town” (9:30-10:00 p.m.)
Building its overall audience for the 3rd week in a row at 9:30pm, ABC’s “Cougar Town” attracted its biggest audience (7.5 million) since its season opener and generated its 2nd-most-watched telecast since January – since 1/20/10. 

The ABC comedy won its half hour with Women 18-34 for the 3rd week in a row and finished No. 1 in Adults 18-34 for the 2nd week running.

“The Whole Truth” (10:00-11:00 p.m.)
Growing on its return to the 10 o’clock hour, after being pre-empted for an ABC News special the previous week, ABC’s “The Whole Truth” hit the series’ 2nd-highest-ever numbers with Total Viewers (4.6 million-tie) and Adults 18-49 (1.4/4), while posting a series-best rating among Men 18-49.

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 38% currently, from 33% 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), 10/20/10)