NBC Takes Lead With 'America's Got Talent'

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NEW YORK (July 5, 2006) — It has to be a little nostalgic for Regis Philbin: it’s summertime, and he’s host of the No. 1 TV show.

NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” was the most popular program on broadcast television last week, drawing 11 million viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research.

It has to make him think back seven years, when ABC’s “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” caught the public’s fancy as a summertime series that eventually grew to dominate the network.

It’s doubtful that the “American Idol”-influenced talent show on NBC will have the same impact. “America’s Got Talent” took advantage of one of the least-watched weeks of the year in TV; only four programs were seen by more than 10 million viewers, Nielsen said.

Then again, Philbin is faring a lot better than ABC’s advice series “How to Get the Guy,” to which only 3.1 million people tuned in. A CBS special, “Shark: Mind of a Demon,” had a not-too-scary audience of 4.9 million.

CBS won the week, averaging 7.4 million viewers (5.0 rating, 9 share). Fox had 6.2 million (4.0, 7), and won among viewers aged 18-to-49. NBC had 5.8 million (3.9, 7), ABC 4.3 million (3.0, 5), UPN 2.1 million (1.4, 2), the WB 1.8 million (1.2, 2) and the i network 670,000 (0.4, 1).

Among the Spanish-language networks, Univision averaged 3.1 million (1.7, 3) and was the No. 2 network overall behind Fox among viewers aged 18 to 34.

NBC’s “Nightly News” won the evening news ratings race, averaging 7.7 million viewers (5.4, 12). ABC’s “World News Tonight” had 7.4 million viewers (5.2, 11) and the “CBS Evening News” had 6.8 million (4.7, 10).

A ratings point represents 1,102,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation’s estimated 110.2 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

For the week of June 26-July 2, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: “America’s Got Talent,” NBC, 11.02 million; “Without a Trace,” CBS, 10.87 million; “CSI: Miami,” CBS, 10.78 million; “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” CBS, 10.57 million; “House,” Fox, 9.87 million; “CSI: NY,” CBS, 9.19 million; “Two and a Half Men,” CBS, 8.86 million; “So You Think You Can Dance” (Wednesday), Fox, 8.80 million; “So You Think You Can Dance” (Thursday), Fox, 8.52 million; “CBS Sunday Movie: How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days,” CBS, 8.39 million.

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