ABC's 'Samantha' makes strides in 18-49

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NEW YORK -- "Samantha Who?" was anything but a ratings mystery in its second outing, with the freshman ABC sitcom not only holding up but also increasing by a tenth of a point in the key adults 18-49 demographic.

The Christina Applegate sitcom so far showed none of the weakness of the other sitcoms coming out of ratings big-shot "Dancing With the Stars," according to preliminary estimates released Tuesday by Nielsen Media Research. Its 14.3 million viewers and 4.6 rating/10 share in the demo was right on track with last week, rare for a new show this season.

"Dancing" (21.1 million, 5.3/13) was up 13% week to week. "The Bachelor" (9.2 million, 3.4/8) held steady week to week at 10 p.m., though it fell to "CSI: Miami" (15.5 million, 4.5/11).

While ABC's lineup was up, NBC's was down. Freshman comedy-drama "Chuck" (7.9 million, 2.8/8) dropped 15% to its lowest original telecast so far. NBC's "Heroes" (10.7 million, 4.9/11) was toppled from its perch atop the adults 18-49 heap as well as losing 6% of its demo rating compared with last week. It was its lowest telecast to date. Things didn't get any better at 10 p.m., where sci-fi drama "Journeyman" (6.3 million, 2.5/6) was beaten by both "CSI: Miami" and "The Bachelor" and was down 7% week to week.

CBS saw improvement in its first hour and a half of primetime, with "How I Met Your Mother" (8.6 million, 3.4/9), "Big Bang Theory" (8.7 million, 3.5/9) and "Two and a Half Men" (13.7 million, 4.8/11) all up week to week. "Rules of Engagement" (10.8 million, 3.9/9) and "CSI: Miami" were flat.

After a week off for the ALCS, "Prison Break" (7.4 million, 3.0/8) and "K-Ville" (6.1 million, 2.0/5) were about even. It was the best total viewer number for "Prison Break" since this season's premiere.

For the entire night, ABC (16 million, 4.6/11) won in both viewership and adults 18-49 followed by CBS (12.1 million, 4.1/10), NBC (8 million, 3.4/8); Fox (6.8 million, 2.5/6); and the CW (2.4 million, 1.0/2).
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