TV ratings: CBS leads a quiet Wednesday; 'Human Target' premiere soft

mark-valley-human-target-s2-320.jpgFast National ratings for Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2010

Ratings were generally pretty soft Wednesday night, especially in the adults 18-49 demographic, where only one network hit the 3.0 mark and no 10 o'clock show even reached a 2.0. CBS won every hour of primetime in viewers to score an across-the-board-victory, while the season premiere of FOX's "Human Target" fell short of its average last season .

CBS averaged 11.9 million viewers and a 7.1 rating/12 share in households for the night. NBC (7.4 million, 5.0/8) narrowly beat ABC (7.3 million, 4.5/7) for second place. FOX took fourth with 6.25 million viewers and a 3.7/6, while The CW came in with 2.3 million viewers and a 1.5/2.

In the adults 18-49 demo, CBS led with a 3.0 rating. ABC's 2.6 was good enough for second, and FOX came in third with a 2.2. NBC managed only a 1.9 in the demo, while The CW scored a 1.0.

Wednesday hour by hour:

8 p.m.

CBS:
"Survivor: Nicaragua" (12 million viewers, 7.0/11 households)
ABC: "The Middle" (9.2 million, 5.4/9)/"Better With You" (7 million, 4.3/7)
NBC: "Dateline" special (6.7 million, 4.6/8)
FOX: "Human Target" season premiere (6.6 million, 4.0/7)
The CW: "America's Next Top Model" (2.5 million, 1.7/3)

18-49 leader: "Survivor: Nicaragua" (3.5)

9 p.m.

CBS:
"Criminal Minds" (14.3 million, 8.5/14)
ABC: "Modern Family" (12 million, 7.1/11)/"Cougar Town" (7.1 million, 4.4/7)
NBC: "Law & Order: SVU" (7.6 million, 5.1/8)
FOX: "Hell's Kitchen" (5.9 million, 3.5/5)
The CW: "Hellcats" (2.1 million, 1.3/2)

18-49 leader: "Modern Family" (4.7)

10 p.m.

CBS:
"The Defenders" (9.4 million, 5.9/11)
NBC: "Law & Order: Los Angeles" (7.8 million, 5.2/9)
ABC: Special - "25 Years of Sexy: People's Sexiest Man Alive" (4.2 million, 2.9/5)

18-49 leader: "The Defenders" and "Law & Order: LA" tied at 1.9

Ratings information includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are preliminary and subject to change. Source: The Nielsen Company.

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Photo credit: FOX