TV Ratings: NBC's 'This Is Us' Marks Best Fall Launch So Far, CBS 'Bull'-ish With Michael Weatherly Drama

This is Us S01E01 Still - Publicity - H 2016
Ron Batzdorff/NBC

This is Us S01E01 Still - Publicity - H 2016

This Is Us and Bull, two of the more hyped launches of the fall season, made their respective schedule entries on Tuesday night. Keeping in line with Mondays new entries, both did fairly well — with NBC's This Is Us soaring after a lead-in from The Voice.

This Is Us opened to an exceptional 2.8 rating among adults 18-49, easily topping the comparable time slot occupant last summer, Best Time Ever With Neil Patrick Harris. The show also averaged nearly 10 million viewers. In the key demo, This Is Us now ranks as the fall season's highest-rated launch to date and the best broadcast drama debut since Supergirl a year ago. 

That was after an improved episode of The Voice, which rose to a 3.6 rating in the key demo from its Monday premiere the night before. The duo helped push NBC to another (relatively easy) nightly victory in the key demo.

The total viewers crown naturally went to CBS, where debut Bull was sandwiched between two different series from the CSI franchise. Bull's biggest achievement is probably the fact that it managed to pull CBS' best showing in the key demo for the night, climbing by a tenth of a point from its lead-in to a 2.2 rating among adults 18-49 and earning a steady 15.5 million viewers.

It was as seamless a launch as CBS could ask for. Up until spring, Bull star Michael Weatherly had been firmly rooted at 8 p.m. as a NCIS lead for nearly a decade. As for NCIS, it was down from the year prior with a 2.1 rating among adults 18-49 and 15.6 million viewers. NCIS: New Orleans also was off, earning a 1.4 rating among adults 18-49 and 12.6 million viewers. 

All of those people tuning into CBS helped propel The Late Show With Stephen Colbert to its highest-rated episode in a full year. The show, featuring a visit from first lady Michelle Obama, delivered a 2.8 overnight rating among households and even matched the Jimmy Fallon showing with Hillary Clinton the night before. 

Dancing With the Stars dropped again on ABC, though its 1.5 rating in the key demo is in line with the comparable night a year ago. (The Voice and NCIS are a formidable duo to face.) Agents of SHIELD nabbed a 1.1 rating among adults 18-49 in its return to 10 p.m. 

Fox's Scream Queens did not have a high linear bar to top for its sophomore debut. The hourlong comedy, which posted lackluster live-plus-same-day scores in its first season, was a multiplatform breakout for the network. Ahead of adds from its very digital audience, the second season kicked off with just a 1.0 rating among adults 18-49 on Tuesday night. That was after Brooklyn Nine-Nine pulled the same score at 8 p.m. and New Girl returned with a 1.2 rating in the key demo.