Fox had another great night in the ratings on Wednesday with American Idol and The O.C. The network dominated the night, nearly doubling the nearest competitor, NBC, across the key ratings categories.
Idol was the biggest factor in Fox’s win. The show drew 29.4 million viewers from 8 to 9 p.m. and had 12-plus ratings in the key adult demos. The O.C., airing from 9 to 10 p.m., averaged 12.8 million viewers, up 44% from a week ago without the Idol lead-in.
NBC aired an original episode of The Apprentice from 8 to 9 p.m., which was a distant second behind Idol, drawing 12.3 million viewers. The show was up 30% in household rating from a week ago when a rerun aired in the time period.
CBS was third in households and fourth or fifth in the adult demos with 60 Minutes II, King of Queens, Becker and 48 Hour Investigates. ABC was fourth in households and third in the demos with Wife & Kids, It’s AllRelative, Bachelorette and Celebrity Mole.
In the weblet battle, The WB came out on top for the night with Smallville and Angel, although from 9 to 10 p.m. a repeat of an America’s Next Top Model episode tied an original Angel across the key categories.
For the night, the Nielsen fast affiliate averages, viewers: Fox, 21.1 million; NBC, 11.6 million; CBS, 9.7 million; ABC, 9.1 million; WB, 4.3 million; UPN, 3.6 million.