ABC is 'Dancing' the week away

Captures demo win; 'Crime' pays in viewers for CBS

With the finale of "Dancing With the Stars," ABC had four of last week's top five shows in both viewership and the adults 18-49 demographic.

That was enough to give ABC the win in the demo for the week ending Sunday, but CBS again pulled another victory in viewership on the strength of "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" and other favorites, according to data released Tuesday by Nielsen Media Research.

"CSI" (24.1 million viewers, 8.0 rating/19 share) had another phenomenal week, passing 9 p.m. Thursday rival "Grey's Anatomy" (20.9 million, 8.7/21) in viewership and coming within a rating point of its top ranking in adults 18-49. But "CSI" could only muster third place in the demo for the week, falling to ABC's "Desperate Housewives" (21.6 million, 8.6/19), which was second place.

Fourth and fifth place in the demo — as well as the week's top two shows in viewership — belonged to "Dancing." Wednesday's results show, where former Dallas Cowboys running back Emmitt Smith defeated "Saved By the Bell" star Mario Lopez, was the week's top show, drawing 27.5 million viewers (and a 7.1/19 in the demo) to ABC. It was just ahead of the Lopez-Smith final face-off the night before that averaged 26.8 million viewers but had a higher demo rating and share, 7.5/20.

Rounding out the top 10 in the demo were NBC's runaway hit "Heroes" (15.1 million, 6.5/15); "CSI: Miami" (18.8 million, 6.3/16); Fox's "House" (14.6 million, 6.2/15); NBC's "Sunday Night Football" (15 million, 5.7/14); and "Deal or No Deal" (18.1 million, 5.5/14).

Shows that also had strong weeks included "60 Minutes" (19.2 million, 4.5/12); "Criminal Minds" (16.5 million, 4.9/12); NBC's "ER" (12.5 million, 5.5/15) and ABC's drama "Brothers & Sisters" (13 million, 5.4/13).

In the nightly news race, "NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams" again was the week's top newscast in both viewership and the adults 18-49 demo. "NBC Nightly News" averaged 9.4 million viewers compared with the 8.9 million who watched "ABC World News With Charles Gibson" and the 7.8 million who tuned into see "CBS Evening News With Katie Couric." NBC topped the demo with a 2.4 rating vs. ABC's 2.3 and CBS' 2.0.

Weekly averages: ABC (13 million, 4.4/12); CBS (13.2 million, 3.9/11); NBC (10.1 million, 3.7/10); Fox (6.6 million, 2.7/7); and the CW (3.7 million, 1.5/4).