Originally created 11/10/05

CBS stretches winning streak; it hasn't lost this season



NEW YORK - CBS kept its unbeaten streak alive as the November ratings "sweeps" period began, becoming the first network to win the first seven weeks of a TV season since 1988.

Both the third-year drama "NCIS" and rookie supernatural series "Ghost Whisperer" on CBS had their largest audiences ever last week, according to Nielsen Media Research. The rookie potboiler "Criminal Minds" also cracked Nielsen's top 10.

Thirteen of the 25 most popular prime-time shows last week were on CBS, including pacesetter "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation." Three of the four most-watched shows were on CBS's Thursday lineup.

ABC remains the toughest competition. But CBS even won last week among the 18-to-49-year-old audience that advertisers crave; the two networks are virtually tied for first this season in that category.

CBS won even though its TV movie about a gigantic storm destroying the world failed to make the top 10. The "Category 7" storm was no match for "Desperate Housewives" and "Grey's Anatomy."

For the week, CBS averaged 13.4 million viewers (8.7 rating, 14 share), ABC 10.6 million (6.9, 11), NBC 9.5 million (6.5, 10), Fox 7.2 million (4.5, 7), the WB 3.3 million (2.2, 3), UPN 3.2 million (2.1, 3) and Pax TV 560,000 (0.4, 1).

NBC's "Nightly News" won the evening news ratings race, averaging 9.8 million viewers (6.8, 13). ABC's "World News Tonight" had 8.5 million viewers (5.9, 12) and the "CBS Evening News" 7.4 million (5.3, 10).

A ratings point represents 1,102,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation's estimated 110.2 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

For the week of Oct. 31-Nov. 6, their networks and viewerships: "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," CBS, 28.7 million; "Desperate Housewives," ABC, 23.9 million; "Without a Trace," CBS, 20.4 million; "Survivor: Guatemala," CBS, 18.3 million; "Grey's Anatomy," ABC, 18.1 million; "NCIS," CBS, 18.1 million; "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition," ABC, 17.7 million; "Cold Case," CBS, 16.6 million; NFL Monday Night Football: Baltimore at Pittsburgh, ABC, 16.5 million; "Criminal Minds," CBS, 16.2 million.

Prime-time viewership numbers compiled by Nielsen Media Research for Oct. 31 to Nov. 6. Listings include the week's ranking, with viewership for the week and season-to-date rankings in parentheses. An "X" in parentheses denotes a one-time-only presentation.

1. (1) "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," CBS, 28.7 million viewers.

2. (2) "Desperate Housewives," ABC, 23.9 million viewers.

3. (3) "Without a Trace," CBS, 20.4 million viewers.

4. (8) "Survivor: Guatemala," CBS, 18.3 million viewers.

5. (4) "Grey's Anatomy," ABC, 18.1 million viewers.

6. (7) "NCIS," CBS, 18.1 million viewers.

7. (16) "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition," ABC, 17.7 million viewers.

8. (12) "Cold Case," CBS, 16.6 million viewers.

9. (10) "NFL Monday Night Football: Baltimore at Pittsburgh," ABC, 16.5 million viewers.

10. (19) "Criminal Minds," CBS, 16.2 million viewers.

11. (12) "CSI: NY," CBS, 15.7 million viewers.

12. (15) "60 Minutes," CBS, 15.6 million viewers.

13. (11) "Law & Order: SVU," NBC, 15.2 million viewers.

14. (17) "NFL National Post Game," CBS, 15.1 million viewers.

15. (8) "Commander in Chief," ABC, 14.6 million viewers.

16. (40) "CBS Sunday Movie: Category 7: End of the World, Part 1," CBS, 14.3 million viewers.

17. (17) "ER," NBC, 14.3 million viewers.

18. (26) "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," NBC, 14.3 million viewers.

19. (24) "House," Fox, 13.4 million viewers.

20. (5) "CSI: Miami," CBS, 13.3 million viewers.



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