CBS' 'NCIS' Still Going Strong

CBS' NCIS CBS, continuing its steady performance in the fourth quarter, offered up another surprise--its best-ever ratings for its 6-year-old drama "NCIS."

It is rare for any TV show to show growth in its sixth year of operation, but "NCIS" posted a top Nielsen 4.0 rating/10 share. Plus, CBS's other Tuesday drama, its new "Mentalist" grabbed its best numbers to date: a 4.0/10. The only relatively down side to the evening for the network was "Without a Trace," which earned a modest 2.8/7 at 10 p.m.

All this gave CBS a 3.6/9 for the night, coming in at second place overall on Tuesday.

Fox's strong lineup of "House," with a 5.5/14, and "Fringe," with a 3.8/9, continued to dominate other networks on Tuesday with an average 4.7/12. "House" matched its season high; "Fringe" fell back a bit to a 3.9/9.

NBC had its "Biggest Loser 6" hitting season highs, for a special two-hour edition, earning a 3.5/9. "Law & Order" was a bit better at a 3.6/10--giving NBC an average 3.5/9 for Tuesday, good for third place, just a tick behind CBS.

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ABC was well off the pace behind NBC--only earning a 2.5/6--with its best results coming from "Dancing with the Stars, Results Show" at 9 p.m. with a 3.6/9. Behind that effort was the "Dancing" recap show at 8 p.m. with a 2.1/5, and a struggling "Eli Stone" at 10 p.m. with a 1.8/5.

CW's big surprise this season, "90210," earned a 1.4/4 among 18-49 viewers--somewhat lower than its past efforts. However, among its core 18-34 viewers, the show earned a still-solid 2.0/6. "Privileged" was in line with its seasonal average: 0.9/2 among 18-49 viewers and 1.4/4 for the 18-34 crowd.

Univision was ahead of CW--at a 1.6/4 to 1.1/3--among 18-49 viewers. Trailing both those networks was MyNetworkTV at a 0.3/1.

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