Fewer TV Shows Record Viewer Gains, 'Simpsons,' 'Chicago Fire' Improve

Three months into the 2018-2019 TV season has resulted in only four of the top 20 broadcast entertainment prime-time network shows with viewing improvements this season:  CBS' "60 Minutes," Fox's "The Simpsons," NBC’s "Chicago Fire" and Fox’s "Last Man Standing."

After 13 weeks, many of the top broadcast network shows registered 10% to 20% declines in live-plus-same-day Nielsen program viewing.

CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory” remains in the top spot in both total viewers (12.6 million) and 18-49 viewers (with a 2.25 rating). The show was down 10% and 18%, respectively, versus the same period a year ago.

NBC’s “This Is Us” takes second place among 18-49 viewers with a 2.22 rating, down 28%. Total viewers have sunk 20% to 8.9 million (8th place).

“Big Bang Theory” and “This Is Us” are the only two network TV shows posting higher than a 2.0 rating among 18-49 viewers.

CBS’ “60 Minutes” is in 8th place among 18-49 viewers with a 1.55 rating, 13% higher versus the same period a year ago. It is also 6% up over a year ago for total viewers, now at 11.3 million (3rd place). The show has gained from stronger late-afternoon NFL game programming lead-ins.



Fox’s “The Simpsons” has also seen better results, up 7% to a 1.52 18-49 rating (10th place) and 13% more in total viewers, with 3.9 million. Other Fox Sunday night animated shows have also risen, including “Bob’s Burgers” and “Family Guy.”

Fox has also seen strong lead-in ratings from late-afternoon NFL Sunday games.

NBC’s “Chicago Fire” was up 20% to 1.29 rating among 18-49 viewers  (17th place) and 33% more in total viewers to 8 million. Sister shows “Chicago Med” and “Chicago PD” are also higher -- with 21% and 9%, respectively, in total viewers.

Fox’s “Last Man Standing,” revived from a run on ABC, has gained 11% among 18-49 viewers, now at a 1.27 rating. It is down 2.7% to 6.2 million viewers.

CBS has five of the top shows when it comes to total viewers: “Big Bang Theory,” 12.6 million; “NCIS,”,12.1 million; “60 Minutes,” 11.3 million; “Young Sheldon,” 10.8 million; and “FBI,” 9.3 million.

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