Thursday January 10, 2013

Associated Press

NEW YORK -- CBS had a stellar slate of comedies and dramas. NBC had football.

The result was a week where NBC seized a narrow lead in viewers, while CBS edged ahead in household ratings, according to data released by the Nielsen Co.

Overall in prime time for the week of Dec. 31, NBC averaged 8.39 million viewers followed closely by CBS with 8.29 million viewers. Meanwhile, CBS scored an average 5.3 household rating for the week, just ahead of NBC with a 5.1 rating.

After NBC and CBS, Fox had 6.84 million, ABC had 5.07 million.

The most-watched broadcast of the week was NBC’s coverage of the NFL playoff game between the Minnesota Vikings and the Green Bay Packers. It drew an audience of 30 million viewers. NBC’s "Pre-Kick" show was in second place, with 29 million viewers.

But CBS dominated the Top 20 with 10 scripted series, plus its "60 Minutes" newsmagazine. In fourth place, CBS’ "The Big Bang Theory" drew more than 19 million viewers, its largest audience this season.

Prime-time viewership numbers (in millions) compiled by Nielsen for Dec. 31-Jan. 6.

1. NFL Playoff: Minnesota at Green Bay (NBC), 30.2.

2. NFL Playoff Pre-Kick (NBC), 29.2.

3. NFL Wildcard Post Game: Seattle at Washington (Fox), 19.5.

4. "The Big Bang Theory" (CBS), 19.2.

5. "Person of Interest" (CBS), 16.2.

6. "Two and a Half Men" (CBS), 15.


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4.

7. "New Year’s Rockin’ Eve" (ABC), 13.3.

8. Cotton Bowl: Texas A&M at Univ. of Okla. (Fox), 11.9.

9. "Elementary" (CBS), 11.4.

10. "The Mentalist" (CBS), 10.8.

11. "NCIS (Special)" (CBS), 10.6.

12. "Blue Bloods" (CBS), 10.1.

13. "The Good Wife" (CBS), 9.9.

14. "60 Minutes" (CBS), 9.6.

15. "New Year’s Rockin’ Eve Celebrates Dick Clark" (ABC), 9.4.

16. "NCIS: Los Angeles (Special)" (CBS), 9.3.

17. "CSI: NY" (CBS), 9.13.

18. "Once Upon a Time" (ABC), 9.10.

19. "The Simpsons" (Fox), 8.9.

20. "Chicago Fire" (NBC), 8.5.

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LOS ANGELES -- Lance Armstrong has agreed to a rare televised interview with Oprah Winfrey that will air on Jan. 17.

According to a release posted on Oprah’s website, Armstrong will address allegations that he used performance-enhancing drugs during his cycling career.

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PASADENA, Calif. -- Fox is taking a page from HBO and scheduling some "big event" series.

The network’s entertainment chief, Kevin Reilly, said that Fox wants to order some short series of around a dozen episodes or less, much like the cable network does.

Fox announced a development deal with producer M. Night Shyamalan for "Wayward Pines." Based on the Blake Crouch novel, "Pines," it involves a Secret Service agent going to an Idaho town to investigate two missing federal agents.

The second deal is to develop "Blood Brothers," about the West Point Class of 1861, with members who fought on both sides of the Civil War yet didn’t lose their regard for each other.

Reilly said he hoped the special series would attract famous actors who would normally be reluctant to be involved in television because they don’t want to commit to a project that could stretch for several years.

The series are expected to air in 2014.