It was American Idol night again Wednesday -- this time the last cut before audience voting begins. That means Fox steam-rollered the competition from 9 p.m.-10 p.m. to win the ratings race for the night in both the 18-49 demo (7.8/20) and households (10.5 million), according to Nielsen Media Research overnight numbers.
Idol's mix of rock, country and crooner wanna-bes defeated kings and presidents (King of Queens, West Wing, Jack & Bobby) on its way to averaging an 11.5/27, up a tick from last Wednesday's 11.4/26.
With ABC's reality show-like drama Lost now free of Idol competition at 8 (Fox moved Idol to nine on Wednesdays last week), ABC's second biggeset hit of the season behind Desperate Housewives won its time period going away with a 6.7/18. That was down from last week's 7.5/19, but world's better that the 3.1/8 for its last outing against Idol (Feb. 2).
ABC was second for the night with a 4.8/12, thanks to Lost and a 4.2/10 for Alias against Idol, though that was down from the 4.7/11 it average last week in its first outing against the sing-off.
CBS was third with a 3.4/9. Its top show was CSI: NY at 10, which won its time period with a 4.9/13.
NBC was fourth with a 3.2/8. It's best performer on the night was Law & Order at a 4.3/11.
The WB was fifth, with Smallville (2.3/6) generating enough heat to balance Jack & Bobby's 1.0/2 at 9-10. UPN was sixth with a 1.2 for its version of Idol,Road to Stardom (1.3/4) and Kevin Hill (1.0/2).