NEW YORK, N.Y. – NBC’s winning streak in the television ratings hit two weeks, with a turnout of 11.5 million viewers for its live production of “The Wiz” helping the network on a night its ratings are usually low.
NBC also benefited from a strong showing for its special saluting the lighting of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree in New York City, the Nielsen company said. A two-week winning streak may not seem like much, but these days CBS is rarely dislodged as television’s most popular network.
The Christmas tree lighting reached 8 million viewers, but CBS’ airing of the holiday chestnut “Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer” was seen by a million more people.
An estimated 46 million people watched President Barack Obama’s Oval Office speech on terrorism on one of 12 different networks. A busy news week in the aftermath of the San Bernardino shootings helped Fox News Channel outrank all of the other cable networks for the second time this year.
NBC averaged 8.9 million viewers for the week in prime time. CBS had 8.4 million. Fox had a strong week with the Big Ten football championship and midseason finale of “Empire,” and was third with 6.5 million viewers. ABC had 5.4 million, Univision had 1.9 million, the CW had 1.8 million, Telemundo had 1.6 million and ION Television had 1.3 million.
Fox News Channel averaged 2.7 million viewers in prime time, ESPN had 2.5 million, ABC Family had 2.4 million, Hallmark had 2.03 million and TBS had 1.73 million.
NBC’s “Nightly News” topped the evening newscasts with an average of 9.8 million viewers. ABC’s “World News Tonight” was second with 9 million and the “CBS Evening News” had 7.9 million viewers.
For the week of Nov. 30-Dec. 6, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: NFL Football: Indianapolis at Pittsburgh, NBC, 19.19 million; NFL Football: Green Bay at Detroit, CBS, 17.85 million; “The OT,” Fox, 16.76 million; “Sunday Night NFL Pre-Kick,” NBC, 14.65 million; “The Voice” (Monday), NBC, 12.56 million; “The Voice” (Tuesday), NBC, 12.13 million; “Empire,” Fox, 11.81 million; “The Wiz Live,” NBC, 11.5 million; “NFL Pregame,” CBS, 10.82 million; NFL Football: Baltimore at Cleveland, ESPN, 10.12 million.
ABC and ESPN are owned by The Walt Disney Co. CBS is owned by CBS Corp. CW is a joint venture of Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corp. Fox is owned by 21st Century Fox. NBC and Telemundo are owned by Comcast Corp. ION Television is owned by ION Media Networks.
This story has been corrected to show Fox News’ cable victory was its second of year, not its third.