ABC has gained some nice lift on the first Sunday night of the new season with "Pan Am." Other Sunday TV show regulars are performing pretty much as expected.
At 10 p.m., "Pan Am" took in a healthy Nielsen preliminary 3.1 rating/ 7 share among 18-49 viewers, which was up versus a year ago when ABC's "Brothers & Sisters" premiered.
But the troubling news for ABC came an hour earlier, for its venerable "Desperate Housewives," starting its last season. It hit the same 3.1 /7 as "Pan Am", but this was down around 30% versus last season's premiere of "Housewives." Earlier in the evening, two hours' worth of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" was down 10% to a 1.8 rating from a 2.0 a year ago.
NBC's "Sunday Night Football" was the big winner for the night -- posting a healthy Nielsen preliminary 7.2/17 rating. But it didn't go away unscathed -- down over 20% versus last year's week three season game.
A major change for the night was moving CBS' award-winning "The Good Wife" to Sunday from Tuesday. Putting "Wife" in the competitive 9 p.m. time slot was a tough go -- a 2.2 rating/5 share, coming in last place in the time period. The good news was that "Wife" wasn't down much, just around 10% versus its start-up last season on Tuesday.
Other CBS shows had a rougher time: "60 Minutes" was off 16% to a 2.6/8; "The Amazing Race" was down 21% to 3.0/8; and "CSI: Miami" at 10 p.m. slipped over 30% to a 2.2/5. It should be noted that CBS did not have a late-afternoon Sunday game this time around, which usually gives it a nice kick for its prime-time lineup.
Fox, however, did get some benefit for its late-afternoon Sunday game, helping to keep its Sunday comedy lineup relatively healthy.
The season premiere of "The Simpsons" was up a few ticks to a 3.8/10 among 18-49 viewers; "The Cleveland Show" was even with a 3.1/7; the network's top Sunday show "Family Guy" was down almost 10% to a 4.1/9; and "American Dad" clocked in even with a year ago at a 3.0/7.
At the end of the night, NBC on average posted the best 18-49 results with a 5.9/15. Fox earned a 4.4/11, followed by CBS with a 2.5/6, ABC at a 2.4/6, and Univision with a 1.3/3.