‘60 Minutes’ and NCAA men’s basketball make CBS the big winner in TV ratings
“60 Minutes” drew its largest audience since the last time it aired after an NFL game, and CBS had each of the week’s next four top-rated programs to finish first in the ratings for the fourth time in the four weeks following the conclusion of NBC’s coverage of the Winter Olympics.
The CBS newsmagazine averaged 9.066 million viewers, its most since Jan. 16, when it averaged 11.291 million viewers following a wild-card round playoff game, according to live-plus-same-day figures released by Nielsen on Tuesday. “60 Minutes” has been the most-watched prime-time program each of the last four weeks. “NCIS” was second, averaging 7.547 million and “The Equalizer” third, averaging 7.079 million, the only entertainment programs between March 14 and Sunday to top 7 million viewers.
For the record:
8:00 p.m. March 22, 2022The headline on an earlier version of this article suggested NFL games helped CBS in the March 14-20 Nielsen ratings. They had helped CBS earlier in the TV season.
NCAA men’s basketball tournament games on CBS accounted for three of the week’s top 16 programs, topped by St. Peter’s 70-60 victory over Murray State on Saturday, which averaged 6.694 million viewers, fifth for the week, one spot behind the 17-minute studio show that preceded it and averaged 6.793 million viewers.
The first-place finish was the 10th time in the 26-week-old 2021-22 primetime television season for CBS, averaging 5.47 million viewers, 10.7% more than its 4.94-million average the previous week and the most since the week of Jan. 17-23 when it aired the Kansas City Chiefs’ 42-36 overtime victory over the Buffalo Bills in an NFL divisional playoff game and averaged 10.37 million viewers for the week.
ABC was second, averaging 3.17 million viewers, and NBC third, averaging 3.14 million. Fox averaged 2.03 million viewers and the CW averaged 400,000.
CBS also maintained its streak of having the most popular comedy each week of the season even with “Young Sheldon” pre-empted for college basketball coverage, as “The Neighborhood” took the distinction, averaging 5.802 million viewers, finishing eighth for the week.
The CBS police procedural “NCIS: Hawaii” was the highest-rated new series for fourth time in the season, averaging 5.096 million viewers, 14th for the week.
“American Idol” was ABC’s biggest draw for the fourth time in the four weeks it has aired this season, finishing 12th, averaging 5.396 million viewers.
“Chicago Fire” was NBC’s ratings leader for the second consecutive week, averaging 6.556 million viewers, sixth for the week. “Chicago P.D.,” which follows “Chicago Fire,” was the most-watched program beginning at 10 p.m. for the second consecutive week and fourth time in the season, averaging 5.332 million viewers, 13th for the week.
The procedural drama “9-1-1: Lone Star” was at the top of Fox’s primetime rankings for the fourth consecutive week and sixth time in seven weeks, averaging 4.64 million viewers, 20th overall.
The CW’s biggest audience was the high school football drama “All American,” which averaged 666,000 viewers, 171st among the week’s broadcast programs.
The premiere of the CBS celebrity competition series “Beyond the Edge” was 65th for the week and third in its Wednesday 9-10 p.m. time slot, averaging 2.576 million viewers. It retained 50.9% of the audience of “Survivor,” which preceded it. “Survivor” averaged 5.063 million viewers, 15th for the week.
The only other premiere on the five major English-language broadcast networks was the Fox comedy “Welcome to Flatch,” which averaged 1.039 million viewers, 114th for the week. It retained 53.3% of the audience of “Call Me Kat,” which preceded it. “Call Me Kat” averaged 1.948 million viewers, 59th among broadcast programs.
The top 20 primetime programs consisted of “60 Minutes,” eight CBS entertainment programs, three NCAA men’s basketball tournament games on CBS and one tournament studio show; four NBC entertainment programs; two ABC alternative programs, “American Idol” and “The Bachelor”; and Fox’s “9-1-1: Lone Star.”
TBS’ coverage of Saturday’s Gonzaga-Memphis NCAA tournament game led the cable ratings with an average of 4.367 million viewers, 23rd overall.
Fox News Channel was won cable network race for the ninth consecutive week, averaging 2.792 million viewers. The next three networks all aired NCAA men’s basketball tournament games — TBS was second, averaging 1.792 million viewers, TNT third, averaging 1.633 million and TruTV fourth, averaging 1.117 million.
The cable top 20 consisted of 12 Fox News Channel political talk shows — five broadcasts of “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” four of “Hannity” and three of “The Ingraham Angle”; four NCAA men’s tournament games on TBS and three on TNT and TBS’ tournament postgame show Sunday.
The science-fiction action film “The Adam Project” was the most-streamed program on Netflix with 85.36 million hours watched in its first full week of release, 7.6% less than the 92.43 million hours the previous week when it available for three days and was second overall and first among films with 92.43 million hours watched in its first three days of release, according to figures released by the streaming service.
Netflix’s most popular television series and second-place finisher overall was the 10-episode fifth season of the historical drama “The Last Kingdom” which was watched for 48.95 million hours in its first full week of release. Viewership was down 23% from the 63.54 million hours watched the previous week when it was available for five days and was second among television shows and third overall.
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