Ratings: NBC Dominates First Stretch of Season, The CW Steady vs. Last Year

Led by broadcast-TV’s highest-rated program in Sunday Night Football, boasting the top drama (This Is Us) and reality show (The Voice), and now home to the No. 3 comedy (Will & Grace), NBC easily won the first 12 weeks of the TV season — for a sixth straight year.

The Peacock network averaged a 2.4 rating in the coveted 18-49 demo (in “most current” aka Live+DVR data), besting second-place Fox (1.8) by a 33 percent margin. CBS is at No. 3 with a 1.7 average, followed by ABC (1.5) and The CW (0.7).

Year over year, NBC is down just 11 percent to Fox’s 18 percent, CBS’ 15 percent and ABC’s 17 percent. The plucky CW held steady.

In total audience — which is always an interesting (if irrelevant-to-ad sales) number to look at, as it speaks to overall popularity (and who doesn’t like to be popular?), CBS has a slight edge thus far this season, averaging 9.8 million to NBC’s 9.2 million. ABC places third with 6.3 mil, followed by Fox (6 mil) and The CW (1.9 mil).

To single out some demo leaders: Sunday Night Football leads all of broadcast TV with a 6.2 rating (in Live+7). This Is Us (5.1) is the top scripted program, followed by CBS’ The Big Bang Theory (4.2), ABC’s The Good Doctor (3.7), CBS’ Young Sheldon (3.7) and Will & Grace (3.6).

In total audience, Big Bang beats everyone with just shy of 19 million weekly viewers, followed by The Good Doctor (17.6 mil), SNF (17.5 mil), Sheldon (17.4 mil) and CBS’ NCIS (17 mil).

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