Fox beats competition with 'House,' 'Idol'

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NEW YORK -- One of a handful of new "House" episodes burned brightly Tuesday, overshadowing everything else in the hour, and along with "American Idol" gave Fox a big win.

"House" (22.5 million, 8.6 rating/20 share in adults 18-49) returned in fine form, according to preliminary data released Wednesday by Nielsen Media Research. "House" got its highest 18-49 ratings since May 2007 and was its most-watched episode since last March. It's up 47% over its season average in viewership and 41% in 18-49.

An hour earlier, "American Idol" (28.1 million, 11.0/27) was dominant. A two-hour "The Biggest Loser" (8.3 million, 3.3/8) was down from last week but rose steadily hour to hour in 18-49.

NBC's "Law & Order: SVU" (9.3 million, 2.9/8) won at 10 p.m. against CBS's "48 Hours Mystery" (7.8 million, 2.4/6) and a repeat of "Boston Legal" (5.2 million, 1.3/3).

Fox (25.3 million, 9.8/24) won in all key measures against ABC (5 million, 1.4/4); CBS (8.9 million, 2.0/5); NBC (8.7 million, 3.2/8); and The CW (2.2 million, 0.9/2).

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