ABC, CBS limp to Sunday wins


ABC and CBS split primetime titles Sunday, though "Desperate Housewives" posted a first-run low and "Survivor: Fiji" marked the series' lowest-rated finale ever.

The finale of CBS' "Survivor: Fiji" — the series' 14th installment — averaged 13.6 million total viewers and a 4.5 rating/13 share in the adults 18-49 demographic from 8-10 p.m. Sunday, according to preliminary estimates released Monday by Nielsen Media Research for the Mother's Day holiday. That rating was off 27% from the May 2006 finale of "Survivor: Panama."

"Survivor" won the 8-9 p.m. hour against shows like ABC's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" (10.2 million, 3.7/11) but was beaten in the 9 p.m. hour by the alphabet's "Desperate Housewives" (15.8 million, 6.0/15). "Housewives," in its third season, was the top show of the night despite posting a series-low for an original episode (excluding clip shows).

At 10 p.m., the hourlong "Survivor" reunion special (12.1 million, 4.3/11) won its first half-hour — during which Santa Monica-based advertising executive Earl Cole was revealed the winner of the $1 million "Fiji" prize — but was surpassed by ABC's "Brothers & Sisters" (12 million, 4.3/12) in the second half-hour.

On the CW, "7th Heaven" made its final bow at 8 p.m., with the series finale (3.4 million, 1.1/4) going out on par with its previous season average, though off significantly from the 10th-season finale on WB Network a year ago (originally intended to be the series finale before the CW gave it a last-minute reprieve). That episode (7.2 million, 2.8/6) featured appearances by some former cast members, including Jessica Biel and Barry Watson, whereas Sunday night's episode did not.

"Heaven" was followed at 9 p.m. by an encore airing of "America's Next Top Model" (1.7 million, 0.6/2).

At Fox, an original episode of "The Simpsons" averaged 6.5 million viewers and a 3.1/10 at 8 p.m., followed by a "Simpsons" repeat (6.7 million, 3.2/9) and a first-run episode of "Family Guy" (7.2 million, 3.5/9) at 9 p.m. In adults 18-34, all three won their time periods (with a 3.7/14, 3.9/13 and 4.8/14, respectively). At 9:30 p.m., "American Dad" averaged 5.8 million viewers and a 2.8/7 in 18-49.

NBC aired an encore of theatrical "Shrek" (6.3 million, 2.1/6) from 8-10 p.m. and a repeat of "Thank God You're Here" (3.8 million, 1.5/4) in the 10 p.m. hour.

ABC (11.2 million, 4.0/12) won the night in adults 18-49, while CBS (12.2 million, 3.7/11) won in viewership, ahead of Fox (5.5 million, 2.6/8), NBC (5.2 million, 1.7/5) and the CW (2.2 million, 0.7/2).