It was a battle of American Idols Tuesday night, with Fox's American Idol going up against one of Barack Obama's inaugural balls on ABC.
Fox prevailed, with Idol averaging an 8.9/22 in the 18-49 demo at 8-9 p.m. versus the first hour of ABC's coverage of the Neighborhood Ball (3.5/8), according to Nielsen overnight numbers.
Fox averaged a 6.8/16 to win the night.
ABC and NBC tied for second in the overnights at a 3.4/8, though that will likely be broken when time-shifted viewing is added in later ratings reports.
ABC's top show was the ball at a 3.7/9. It also won the 10-11 p.m. hour with a 2.9/7 for its news special on the inauguration, beating out NBC's inauguration special (2.2/6) as well as The Mentalist on CBS (2.6/7).
NBC benefitted from not having a two-hour Idol to go up against. Its two hours worth of Biggest Loser was up 18% in 18-49's over the week before, averaging a 3.3/8 from 8-10 p.m.
CBS was fourth on the night with a 2.2/5, led by The Mentalist and not attracting much of a crowd to its 9-10 p.m. inauguration special (1.8/4).
The WC was fifth with a .9/2 for 90210 and Privileged.