Top 20 Prime-Time TV shows, through March 31

April 3rd, 2013
By

Marching right along — do you wonder, or care, which shows are scoring with TV viewers this spring?
The Nielsen verdict is in.
CBS’ “NCIS” is the TV’s top procedural drama.
ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” leads the reality roster.
CBS’ “Sixty Minutes” is the ranking newsmagazine.
Make what you will of the Nielson’s Top 20 shows, ending March 31, listed this week. Rather predictable, very few surprises, some obvious disappointments.
Basketball pre-empted some of the favored laff riots during the period, so only two comedies made the short list: “Mike & Molly” and “2 Broke Girls,” CBS’ Monday stalwarts.
Speaking of Monday, CBS “Hawaii Five-0” was tied at No. 19 with CBS’ Sunday drama,“The Good Wife.” Both just made the Top 20 ranking.
Talk about down to the wire.
The most-watched cable series, AMC’s “Walking Dead,” logged 12.4 million viewers, but cable is not measured against the prime-time network programs. Surprisingly,
the History Channel’s “The Bible” attracted 11.7 million viewers. God lives... and doing better than our "Five-0."
And yes, Fox’s “American Idol” is performing in the shadows of NBC’s “The Voice.” Glory hallelujah, yesterday's hits are today's ... you get the idea.
Demographics may boost advertising power for some of the shows, but the reality is clear: a few shows have shrinking viewership. Enough to cause some concern, wouldn't you think?

The Top 20, in millions

1 — “NCIS” (CBS)..............................................................................................18.6 mil
2 — “Dancing With the Stars” (Monday, ABC)....................................................14.5
— “NCIS: Los Angeles” (CBS)..........................................................................14.5
4 — “The Voice” (Monday, NBC)........................................................................13.6
5 — “Dancing With the Stars Results Show” (Tuesday, ABC)...............................13.4
6 — “The Voice” (Tuesday, NBC)........................................................................12.4
7 — “American Idol” (Wednesday, Fox)..............................................................12.3
8 — “Sixty Minutes” (CBS)..................................................................................11.7
9 — “American Idol” (Thursday, Fox).................................................................11.4
10 — Wichita State/Iowa State (CBS)..................................................................11.3
11 — “Castle” (ABC)...........................................................................................10.6
12 — “Body of Proof” (ABC).................................................................................9.6
13 — “Survivor: Caramoan” (CBS)........................................................................9.4
— “Amazing Race” (CBS).................................................................................9.4
15 — “Modern Family” (ABC)..............................................................................9.1
16 — “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC).............................................................................9.0
— “Mike & Molly” (CBS)..................................................................................9.0
18 — “2 Broke Girls” (CBS)..................................................................................8.8
19 — “Hawaii Five-0” (CBS).................................................................................8.6
— “The Good Wife” (CBS)................................................................................8.6

Source: Nielsen
In network finishes, CBS led the list, followed by ABC and NBC.

3 Responses to “Top 20 Prime-Time TV shows, through March 31”

  1. hossana:

    Hawaii 5-0 should disappear from tv forever...what a piece of trash!!


  2. Glenn D:

    Shows that I think have already "jumped the shark" so many seasons ago and should be put out of misery: Grey's Anatomy, Survivor, American Idol, and any of those clone shows like The Voice. NCIS LA is getting bad because I am getting tired of that one LAPD character whine all the time. The original NCIS is still my top pick - so are Persons of Interest, and Criminal Minds.


  3. fans are too defensive:

    I never liked AI and singing shows and dancing shows. I always just get bored. But then again, I am geeky and I like supernatural shows so I sure can't throw any stones! LOL

    As always, it is interesting to see where the viewers in general go but for the advertisers, these numbers are irrelevant. That pesky demo is what counts for a show's survival.

    Unless of course, they get lucky like H50 and TNT gets sucked into a syndication deal the first year BEFORE the sh---t hit the fan and H50 plummeted.

    There is no doubt in my mind that were this a chart based on demo, H50 would be waaaaay down the list. It JUST barely makes the chart in viewership as it is.