Fox's Wednesday-night lineup won the night in 18-49s, anchored by the half-hour American Idol vote-off show (8.9 rating/25 share from 8:30 p.m.-9 p.m.) but with help from time-period winner That 70's Show (4.5/15 from 8 p.m.-8:30 p.m.) and a strong second-place finish from The O.C. (4.7/12) from 9 p.m.-10 p.m. Fox averaged a 5.7 rating/16 share on the night in the key demo.
Second for the night was split between ABC and NBC, both averaging a 4.1/11 in 18-49s.
ABC rose to second on the strength of a first-place outing from reality show, The Bachelor (4.8/12), at 9-10, just edging out O.C., and a strong second at 10-11 by its revamped Extreme Makeover, which featured reveals on the half-hour and hour instead of both at the end, likely a move to keep folks from surfing away only to return at the very end for the frog-into-prince or princess part of the show.
NBC was powered primarily by a time-period-winning performance by Law & Order (5.6/15) and a solid West Wing (3.8/10) at 9-10. West Wing came in third in its time period, but it was its best 18-49 rating since January.
CBS was a distant fourth at a 2.6/7. It's strongest performance was a 3.2/8 for a repeat of King of Queens at 9-9:30 that only managed a fourth-place finish. 60 Minutes II also came in fourth in its time period at 8-9. 48 Hours came in third at 10-11, but only three networks were competing.
The WB was fifth with a 1.9/5 for Smallville and Angel, while UPN was sixth with a 1.1/3 for Enterprise and I'm Still Alive.
The order of finish in households was Fox, 8.1/13; NBC, 8.0/13; ABC, 6.6/11; CBS, 6.1/10; WB, 2.7/4; 1.9/3.