TV ratings: 'Idol' final three carries Wednesday

michael-lynche-idol0512.jpgFast National ratings for Wednesday, May 12, 2010

"American Idol" narrowed its field to the final three on Wednesday, and that was enough for FOX to hold off CBS and win the night's ratings race.

FOX averaged 12.1 million viewers and a 7.2 rating/12 share in households for the evening. CBS finished second with 10.4 million viewers and a 6.6/11. NBC (6.45 million, 4.1/7) was third, followed by ABC (6 million, 3.8/6), which saw its comedies improve but "Happy Town" continue to fall. The CW scored 3.75 million viewers and a 2.4/4.

In the adults 18-49 demographic, FOX's 3.9 rating led the pack by a decent margin. CBS came in second at 2.6, with ABC at 2.2 and NBC at 2.0. The CW drew a 1.7.

Wednesday's hourly numbers:

8 p.m.

CBS:
"The New Adventures of Old Christine" season finale (7.2 million viewers, 4.7/8 households)/"The Big Bang Theory" rerun (6.65 million, 4.2/7)
NBC: "Minute to Win It" (6.7 million, 3.9/7)
ABC: "The Middle" rerun (5.7 million, 3.7/7)/ "The Middle" new episode (7.5 million, 4.6/8)
FOX: "Lie to Me" rerun (5.1 million, 3.4/6)
The CW: "America's Next Top Model" season finale (3.9 million, 2.5/4)

18-49 leader: "The Middle" new episode (2.4)

9 p.m.

FOX:
"American Idol" (19.1 million, 11.0/17)
CBS: "Criminal Minds" (12.9 million, 8.1/13)
ABC: "Modern Family" (10.1 million, 6.1/10)/"Cougar Town" (6.1 million, 3.9/6)
NBC: "Mercy" season finale (4.1 million, 2.8/4)
The CW: "America's Next Top Model" season finale (3.6 million, 2.3/4)

18-49 leader: "American Idol" (6.4)

10 p.m.

CBS:
"CSI: NY" (11.4 million, 7.4/13)
NBC: "Law & Order: SVU" (8.5 million, 5.7/10)
ABC: "Happy Town" (3.2 million, 2.2/4)

18-49 leader: "Law & Order: SVU" (2.8)

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

More ratings at Zap2it: Daily, weekly and cable

Photo credit: FOX