Super Bowl tops ratings; outage highly viewed, too

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TV ratings

(AP Photo)

NEW YORK (AP) — As it does nearly every year, the Super Bowl will almost certainly stand as the most-watched television event of 2013. This year, the Blackout Bowl wasn’t too far behind.

CBS prevailed upon the Nielsen Co. to estimate how many viewers watched the Baltimore Ravens’ victory over the San Francisco 49ers while excluding the 34 minutes in the third quarter where the game was stopped because of a partial power outage in the Superdome. The game was seen by an average of 108.7 million people, down from the last two years but still ranking as the third most-watched show in U.S. television history.

Leaving aside the outage period, which came at a time the Ravens had a big lead, was likely CBS’ attempt to nudge the viewership to a historically high level.

Yet few people were interested in tuning out. Nielsen said 106.6 million watched the power outage delay, which was basically extended scenes of first half highlights and players stretching to keep warm.

CBS dominated the week’s non-football programming, too. In a positive sign for Fox, its new drama “The Following” was the most-watched scripted show on ABC, NBC or Fox last week, Nielsen said.

Skewed by Super Sunday, CBS averaged 28 million viewers in prime time for the week (13.6 rating, 22 share). Fox was second with 6.2 million viewers (3.7, 6), ABC had 4.7 million (3.1, 5), NBC had 3.9 million (2.6, 4), the CW had 1.6 million (1.0, 2) and ION Television had 1.2 million (0.8, 1).

Among the Spanish-language networks, Univision led with 3.6 million (1.9, 3), Telemundo had 1.2 million (0.6, 1), UniMas had 750,000 (0.4, 1), Estrella had 210,000 and Azteca had 120,000 (both 0.1, 0)

NBC’s “Nightly News” topped the evening newscasts with an average of 9.2 million viewers (5.9, 12). ABC’s “World News” was second with 8.3 million (5.6, 11) and the “CBS Evening News” had 6 million viewers (3.9, 8).

A ratings point represents 1,147,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation’s estimated 114.7 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

For the week of Jan. 28-Feb. 3, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: Super Bowl XLVII: Baltimore vs. San Francisco, CBS, 108.69 million; “Super Bowl Power Outage,” CBS, 106.56 million; “NCIS,” CBS, 22.07 million; “The Big Bang Theory,” CBS, 17.76 million; “NCIS: Los Angeles,” CBS, 17.3 million; “American Idol” (Wednesday), Fox, 15.78 million; “Person of Interest,” CBS, 15.71 million; “American Idol” (Thursday), Fox, 13.8 million; “Two and a Half Men,” CBS, 13.7 million; “Blue Bloods,” CBS, 11.5 million.

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