For the second consecutive week, TBS has topped primetime as basic cable's #1 network among adults 18-34.
The Big Bang Theory continues to expand TBS's primetime audience, with the Wednesday 9:30 p.m. episode drawing a remarkable 2.8 million viewers to rank as basic cable's #1 sitcom for the week. It was one of 14 episodes of the hit series that drew more than 2 million viewers. Overall, The Big Bang Theory accounted for 16 of basic cable's Top 20 sitcom telecasts for the week among total viewers and 13 of the Top 20 among adults 18-34.
TBS also delivered big numbers with its annual Funniest Commercials of the Year special. The Wednesday 10 p.m. special drew 2.7 million viewers, up an incredible 22% over the 2010 edition. In addition, Funniest Commercials of the Year: 2011 delivered more than 1.4 million adults 18-49, up 26% over last year.
Two new episodes of Tyler Perry's For Better or Worse once again joined The Big Bang Theory on the list of basic cable's Top 20 sitcom telecasts for the week. The Friday night comedy averaged a solid 2.2 million viewers at 10 p.m. growing to 2.4 million viewers at 10:30 p.m. Compared to the prior week, Tyler Perry's For Better or Worse was up 2% in total viewers.
TBS's Emmy(R)-nominated late-night series CONAN, which is enjoying solid audience growth in December, averaged 789,000 viewers in Live + Same Day delivery last week, with 350,000 adults 18-34, 539,000 adults 18-49. This month, CONAN is up 5% in total viewers, a remarkable 9% in adults 18-34 and 3% in adults 18-49 compared to November. The show's median age of 33 makes it the youngest of the late-night talk shows. Meanwhile, last Tuesday's Best of CONAN primetime special drew more than 1 million viewers in Live + Same Day.
In time-shifted viewing, CONAN grew its audience for the week of Nov. 28 by 15% over Live + Same Day, for a final tally of 892,000. Adults 18-34 expanded by 27% to 400,000, while adults 18-49 grew by 20% to 607,000.
TNT's blockbuster dramas The Closer and Rizzoli & Isles ranked as basic cable's top scripted programs for the week. Rizzoli & Isles came out on top in Live + 3, with 6.9 million viewers (4.9 million in Live + Same Day). The Closer followed closely with 6.8 million viewers in Live + 3, but topped the charts in Live + Same Day with 5.3 million. Among TNT's target demo, The Closer drew 2.4 million adults 25-54 in Live + 3 (1.6 million L+SD), while Rizzoli & Isles delivered 2.3 million adults 25-54 (1.5 million L+SD).
Both The Closer and Rizzoli & Isles enjoyed outstanding growth last week. Rizzoli & Isles' Live + Same Day audience was up a remarkable 27% among viewers and 11% among adults 25-54 compared to the prior week. Meanwhile, The Closer's Live + Same Day audience was up 9% among viewers and 4% among adults 25-54.
In time-shifted viewing, The Closer's Nov. 28 winter premiere scored a final tally of 7.4 million viewers and 2.5 million adults 25-54 in Live + 7, while the winter premiere of Rizzoli & Isles delivered 7.3 million viewers and 2.7 million adults 25-54.
On Sunday, TNT's caper series Leverage featured a boys-only episode that brought in more than 2.1 million viewers in Live + Same Day, up 15% compared to the prior week. The episode also averaged 978,000 adults 25-54, up 10% over last week. Meanwhile, time-shifted viewing has lifted the series' Dec. 4 episode to 3 million viewers and 1.5 million adults 25-54 in Live + 7.
A new episode of Family Guy (Monday, 11 p.m.) on Adult Swim earned double-digit delivery increases across the board - adults 18-34 (1,303,000) grew by 21%, adults 18-49 (1,717,000) by 14%, adults 18-24 (744,000) by 23%, men 18-34 (819,000) by 34%, men 18-49 (1,070,000) by 29% and men 18-24 (463,000) by 36%. Additionally, a new episode of Robot Chicken (Sunday, 11:30 p.m.) ranked #1 in its time period on basic cable among adults 18-34, 18-49 and men 18-34.
Across the third week of December 2011, Adult Swim ranked #1 on basic cable for Total Day Delivery of adults 18-34, 18-49 and 18-24, as well as men 18-34, 18-24 and 18-49. Compared to the same time period last year, Total Day delivery increased across all adult demos: average adults 18-34 (569,000) grew by 5%, adults 18-49 (769,000) by 3% and adults 18-24 (305,000) by 6%.
Adult Swim programming - including Family Guy and American Dad - accounted for 16 of the top 50 telecasts for the week on basic cable among adults 18-34 (more than any other network), and 23 of the top 50 among men 18-34, both more than any other network.
truTV, which is on track to score its best year ever with young adults and men, ranked among basic cable's Top 10 entertainment networks last week among adults 18-49, men 18-34 and men 18-49. The network also scored its youngest week ever, with a primetime median age of 39, a full seven years lower than the same week last year. In addition, truTV garnered double-digit growth across the board in primetime.
truTV's all-new series Impractical Jokers scored a strong debut Thursday night, with the 10 p.m. series premiere averaging more than 1.5 million viewers. The show ranked among ad-supported cable's Top 10 entertainment programs in the timeslot with total viewers, adults 18-34, adults 18-49, men 18-34 and men 18-49. The first two episodes also scored a median age of 32, which is eight years younger than the same timeslot last year.
truTV's Lizard Lick Towing brought in another of set of outstanding numbers, with Monday's 10 p.m. episode averaging 2 million viewers and scoring 17% growth among adults 18-34 compared to the prior week's season premiere. Lizard Lick Towing ranked among ad-supported cable's Top 5 programs in its timeslot among key adult and male demos.
The Tuesday 9 p.m. episode of truTV's hit series Hardcore Pawn averaged 2 million viewers and ranked among basic cable's Top 5 programs in its timeslot among men 18-34. The show also delivered triple-digit time-period growth in key adult and male demos.
Also performing strongly last week was Wednesday's episode of the truTV hit Full Throttle Saloon, which brought in more than 1.6 million viewers. The show garnered triple-digit growth for its timeslot among key adult and male demos, while also scoring a Top 5 ranking among basic cable programs for the 10 p.m. timeslot.
Cartoon Network's evening prime time (M-Su, 7-9 p.m.) posted significant double-digit gains across all key kids demos vs. the same time period last year - average kids 6-11 delivery (612,000) increased by 22%, kids 2-11 (887,000) by 14% and kids 9-14 (513,000) by 39%. Total Day delivery also grew across all kids demos - average kids 6-11 (327,000) by 3%, kids 2-11 (517,000) by 1% and kids 9-14 (270,000) by 23%.
Monday night comedies (7-9 p.m.) continued their red-hot streak across 2011, once again ranking as the #1 destination on all broadcast & cable television among boys 6-11, 2-11 and 9-14. Compared to the previous year's time period, average kids 6-11 delivery (764,000) grew by 41%, kids 2-11 (1,095,000) by 31%, kids 9-14 (713,000) by 71%, boys 6-11 (585,000) by 59%, boys 2-11 (811,000) by 52% and boys 9-14 (562,000) by 96%. Two original animated series also scored as the #1 telecast of the day: Adventure Time (8 p.m.) with boys 9-14, and Regular Show (8:15 p.m.) with boys 6-11. Both shows also ranked #1 in their time periods among kids 9-14 and all boy demos (6-11, 2-11, 9-14).
Earning double-digit delivery gains across all kids and boys 2-11/6-11, Tuesday night (7-9 p.m.) also catapulted Cartoon Network as the #1 destination on broadcast & cable television among boys 9-14.
Also across the week, Cartoon Network ranked as the #1 television network among all TV for boys 6-11 & 9-14 on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday night (7-9 p.m.). The network also ranked #1 for boys 2-11 on Thursday and Saturday night.