Procedural dramas jump to front in TV’s opening week

NEW YORK (AP) — Besides live sports, the one thing broadcast networks can be counted on for these days is franchise procedural dramas.

That was evident on opening week of a new television season, when the 10 most-watched scripted programs all fit this tried-and-true formula, according to the Nielsen company.

There were three programs each in CBS’ “FBI” series and NBC’s “Chicago” shows, and two each of CBS’ “NCIS” shows and NBC’s “Law & Order”...

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NEW YORK (AP) — Besides live sports, the one thing broadcast networks can be counted on for these days is franchise procedural dramas.

That was evident on opening week of a new television season, when the 10 most-watched scripted programs all fit this tried-and-true formula, according to the Nielsen company.

There were three programs each in CBS’ “FBI” series and NBC’s “Chicago” shows, and two each of CBS’ “NCIS” shows and NBC’s “Law & Order” franchise.

No comedies appeared in Nielsen’s top 20 programs.

Buoyed by “Sunday Night Football,” NBC won the week in prime time with an average of 6 million viewers. ABC had 4.5 million, Fox had 4 million, CBS had 3.9 million, Univision had 1.2 million, Ion Television had 960,000 and Telemundo had 850,000.

Fox News Channel was the most popular cable network, averaging 2.12 million viewers in prime time. ESPN had 2.02 million, MSNBC had 1.21 million, HGTV had 811,000 and Hallmark had 688,000.

ABC’s “World News Tonight” won the evening news ratings race, averaging 7.6 million viewers. NBC’s “Nightly News” had 6.5 million and the “CBS Evening News” had 4.6 million.

For the week of Sept. 19-25, the 20 most-watched programs in prime time, their networks and viewerships:

1. NFL Football: San Francisco at Denver, NBC, 17.8 million.

2. NFL Football: Minnesota at Philadelphia, ABC, 12.86 million.

3. “NFL Pregame,” NBC, 12.85 million.

4. “The OT,” Fox, 12.13 million.

5. “Football Night in America,” NBC, 9.11 million.

6. “60 Minutes,” CBS, 7.14 million.

7. “FBI,” CBS, 6.81 million.

8. “Chicago Fire,” NBC, 6.75 million.

9. “Chicago Med,” NBC, 6.59 million.

10. NFL Football: Tennessee at Buffalo, ESPN, 6.57 million.

11. “The Voice” (Tuesday), NBC, 6.19 million.

12. “NFL Pregame,” ABC, 6.16 million.

13. “The Voice” (Monday), NBC, 6.12 million.

14. “NCIS,” CBS, 5.82 million.

15. “Chicago PD,” NBC, 5.48 million.

16. “Law & Order: SVU,” NBC, 5.47 million.

17. “FBI: International,” CBS, 5.44 million.

18. “NCIS: Hawai’i,” CBS, 5.31 million.

19. “FBI: Most Wanted,” CBS, 5.27 million.

20. “Survivor,” CBS, 5.05 million.

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