Fox clobbers competition Tues.


NEW YORK -- Fox ruled the primetime roost Tuesday, with "American Idol" and "House" overwhelming the competition between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.

The 10 p.m. hour was won by a special edition of "Primetime" focusing on the aftermath of Monday's massacre at Virginia Tech, while ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" results show dipped slightly in viewers and was essentially even in the adults 18-49 demographic, according to preliminary estimates released Wednesday by Nielsen Media Research.

"Idol" averaged 25.9 million viewers and a 9.9 rating/27 share in adults 18-49, outpacing anything else in the hour. It was down, however, week to week (26.8 million, 10.3/29). "NCIS" (11.1 million, 2.4/7) was a repeat, and the "Dancing" recap (6.9 million, 1.8/5) did scant business, just ahead in the demo of the CW's "Gilmore Girls" (3.8 million, 1.7/5).

"House" kept 92% of the "Idol" adults 18-49 -- tied with the Feb. 27 episode of "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?" in retention -- with 22.6 million viewers and a 9.1/22. "House" was up from last week's 21.6 million viewers and 8.8/22. It was well ahead of ABC's "Dancing" results show (16.2 million, 4.1/10).

Three network magazine shows Tuesday were devoted to the Virginia Tech shootings, with ABC's "Primetime" (11.3 million, 3.5/10) beating CBS' "48 Hours Mystery" (6.5 million, 2.2./6) at 10 p.m. and "Dateline NBC" (5.1 million, 1.6/4) at 8 p.m.

Nightly averages: Fox (24.2 million, 9.5/25); ABC (11.5 million, 3.1/8); CBS (8.3 million, 2.2/6); NBC (6.3 million, 1.8/5); and the CW (3.4 million, 1.6/4).