Battle Of The Ratings: CBS Is The Most Watched Network For 10 Years In A Row


Battle Of The Ratings: CBS Is The Most Watched Network For 10 Years In A Row

CBS is finishing another television season atop the television ratings, but the network had to sweat a little this time.

The traditional TV season that started in September ends on Wednesday, and CBS will win bragging rights for the 10th year in a row, the Nielsen company said.

CBS has won for 15 of the last 16 years, the only exception being Fox during the height of American Idol.

Nielsen says CBS averages nine million viewers in prime-time this season. NBC is averaging 8.9 million, but there's not enough time to catch up.

TV Series Finale

NBC made it particularly close this year because it televised both the Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics, which let the network dominate in February.

But CBS withstood it with the strength of its regular schedule.

"This is an amazing accomplishment," said Kelly Kahl, CBS entertainment president.

Justin Timberlake performing at the 2018 Super BowlChicago Tribune

Still, it's NBC's closest finish to CBS in 16 years. NBC won among viewers aged 18-to-49-years-old, the demographic its advertisers care most about, for the fourth time in five years.

ABC is averaging 6.1 million viewers this season, and Fox is at 4.9 million, Nielsen said.

CBS won the last full week of the TV season, averaging 6.6 million viewers. NBC had 5 million viewers, ABC had 4.5 million, Fox had 2.5 million, Univision had 1.5 million, the CW and ION Television had 1.2 million and Telemundo had 1.1 million.

TNT was the week's most popular cable network, averaging 3.06 million viewers in prime-time. Fox News Channel had 2.34 million, ESPN had 2.28 million, MSNBC had 1.67 million and USA had 1.39 million.

ABC's "World News Tonight" topped the evening newscasts with an average of 8.2 million viewers. NBC's "Nightly News" was second with 7.8 million and the "CBS Evening News" had 5.7 million viewers.

For the week of May 14-20, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships:

NCIS, CBS, 12.71 million

Roseanne, ABC, 10.74 million


NCIS: New Orleans, CBS, 9.44 million

TV Guide

NBA Conference Finals: Golden State at Houston, Game 1, TNT, 8.9 million

The Mercury News

The Voice (Monday & Tuesday), NBC, 8.7 million


NBA Conference Finals: Cleveland at Boston, Game 2, ESPN, 8.42 million

The sports Quotient

60 Minutes, CBS, 8.36 million

Billboard Music Awards, NBC, 7.87 million

Free Press Journal

NCIS: Los Angeles,CBS, 7.82 million

TV Guide

Do you watch any of these top shows? Let us know in the comments!

If you're a fan of NCIS, you'll enjoy these articles:

'NCIS' Bids Farewell To Two Beloved Characters

12 Things Only "NCIS" Fanatics Will Understand

Blair isn't a bestselling author, but she has a knack for beautiful prose. When she isn't writing for Shared, she enjoys listening to podcasts.