What We’re Watching: 60 Minutes,’ CBS Top Prime-Time Ratings for Fourth Consecutive Week

By STEVEN HERBERT, City News Service
Published on Mar 23, 2022

“60 Minutes” drew its largest audience since the most recent time it followed an NFL game and CBS had each of the next four most- watched programs to finish atop the ratings for the fourth time in the four weeks following the conclusion of NBC’s coverage of the Winter Olympics, according to live-plus-same-day figures released by Nielsen Tuesday.

The CBS news magazine averaged 9.066 million viewers, its most since Jan. 16, when it averaged 11.291 million viewers following a wild-card round NFL playoff game. Sunday’s edition followed the Duke-Michigan State NCAA men’s basketball tournament game in the Eastern and Central time zones, where the bulk of the nation’s population lives and the show began 41 minutes later than usual.

The viewership figure for the prime-time runover of Duke’s 85-76 victory was not available. The runover is not considered a separate program but is included in the weekly average.

“60 Minutes” has been the most-watched prime-time program each of the past four weeks.

“NCIS” was second, averaging 7.547 million and “The Equalizer” third, averaging 7.079 million, the only entertainment programs between March 14 and Sunday to top 7 million viewers.

NCAA men’s basketball tournament games on CBS accounted for three of the week’s top 16 programs, topped by St. Peter’s 70-60 victory over Murray State Saturday, which averaged 6.694 million viewers, fifth for the week, one spot behind the 17-minute studio show that preceded it and averaged 6.793 million viewers.

The order of finish among the major English-language broadcast was unchanged from the previous three weeks.

CBS finished first for the 10th time in the 26-week old 2021-22 prime- time television season, averaging 5.47 million viewers, 10.7% more than its 4.94-million average the previous week and most since the week of Jan 17-23 when it aired the Kansas City Chiefs’ 42-36 overtime victory over the Buffalo Bills in an NFL divisional playoff game and averaged 10.37 million viewers for the week.

ABC was second, averaging 3.17 million viewers, and NBC third, averaging 3.14 million. CBS, ABC and NBC all aired 22 hours of prime-time programming.

Fox averaged 2.03 million viewers for its 15 hours of prime-time programming. The CW averaged 400,000 for its 14 hours of prime-time programming.

CBS maintained its streak of having the most-watched comedy each week of the season even with “Young Sheldon” pre-empted for college basketball coverage, with “The Neighborhood” taking the distinction, averaging 5.802 million viewers, finishing eighth for the week.

The CBS police procedural “NCIS: Hawaii” was the most-watched new series for fourth time in the season, averaging 5.096 million viewers, 14th for the week.

“American Idol” was ABC’s most-watched program for the fourth time in the four weeks it has aired this season, finishing 12th, averaging 5.396 million viewers.

“Chicago Fire” was NBC’s most-watched program for the second consecutive week, averaging 6.556 million viewers, sixth for the week. “Chicago P.D.,” which follows “Chicago Fire,” was the most-watched program beginning at 10 p.m. for the second consecutive week and fourth time in the season, averaging 5.332 million viewers, 13th for the week.

The procedural drama “9-1-1: Lone Star” was Fox’s most-watched program for the fourth consecutive week and sixth time in seven weeks, averaging 4.64 million viewers, 20th overall.

The CW’s most-watched program was the high school football drama “All American,” which averaged 666,000 viewers, 171st among the week’s broadcast programs. Its overall rank was not available.

The premiere of the CBS celebrity competition series “Beyond The Edge” was 65th for the week and third in its Wednesday 9-10 p.m. time slot, averaging 2.576 million viewers. It retained 50.9% of the audience of “Survivor” which preceded it. “Survivor” averaged 5.063 million viewers, 15th for the week.

The other premiere on the five major English-language broadcast networks, the Fox comedy “Welcome To Flatch,” averaged 1.039 million viewers, 114th for the week. Its overall rank was not available. It retained 53.3% of the audience of “Call Me Kat” that preceded it. “Call Me Kat” averaged 1.948 million viewers, 59th among broadcast programs.

The 20 most watched prime-time programs consisted of “60 Minutes,” eight CBS entertainment programs, three NCAA men’s basketball tournament games on CBS and one tournament studio show; four NBC entertainment programs; two ABC alternative programs, “American Idol” and “The Bachelor”; and Fox’s “9-1- 1: Lone Star.”

The most-watched cable program was TBS’ coverage of Saturday’s Gonzaga- Memphis NCAA tournament game, which averaged 4.367 million viewers, 23rd overall.

Fox News Channel was the most-watched cable network for the ninth consecutive week, averaging 2.792 million viewers. The next three networks all aired NCAA men’s basketball tournament games — TBS was second, averaging 1.792 million viewers, TNT third, averaging 1.633 million and truTV fourth, averaging 1.117 million.

The cable top 20 consisted of 12 Fox News Channel political talk shows — five broadcasts of “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” four of “Hannity” and three of “The Ingraham Angle”; four NCAA men’s tournament games on TBS and three on TNT and TBS’ five-minute tournament postgame show Sunday.

An episode of the Univision telenovela “Madre” was the week’s most- watched Spanish-language program for the second time in three week, with the Monday episode averaging 1.827 million viewers, 63rd among broadcast programs. Its overall rank was not available.

Univision was the most-watched Spanish-language network for the 120th consecutive week and 122nd time in 123 weeks, averaging 1.45 million viewers. Telemundo was second, averaging 930,000 viewers, followed by UniMas (560,000), Estrella TV (100,000) and Azteca America (40,000).

ABC’s “World News Tonight with David Muir” was the most-watched nightly newscast for the 119th time in 120 weeks and 171st time in 173 weeks, averaging 7.942 million viewers. “NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt” was second, averaging 6.721 million.

The “CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell” was third, averaging 5.026 million.

The week’s 10 most-watched prime-time programs were CBS’ “60 Minutes,” “NCIS,” “The Equalizer,” Saturday’s 17-minute NCAA men’s basketball studio show and the St. Peter’s-Murray State game that followed; NBC’s “Chicago Fire” and “Chicago Med”; CBS’ “The Neighborhood,” “Bob Hearts Abishola” and “NCIS: Los Angeles.”

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