Ratings: ‘Empire’ Returns to Reclaim First Place for Fox

Though network nearly finishes fourth in total viewers

“Empire” returned to Fox last night, handing the broadcaster the top spot in the key 18-49 demographic. Unfortunately, the show couldn’t carry enough overall eyeballs to offset a softer “Shots Fired,” and Fox nearly finished fourth in terms of total viewers.

Oh, and the hip-hop soap opera also settled for new series lows on Wednesday.

Elsewhere, CBS was first in terms of primetime audience averages. NBC was second per that Nielsen metric, and ABC just missed out on the bronze.

Fox was first in ratings with a 1.4 rating/6 share in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demo, but third in total viewers with an average of 4.77 million, according to preliminary numbers. “Shots Fired” at 8 p.m. had a 0.8/3 and 3.3 million viewers. At 9, “Empire” put up a 2.1/8 and 6.2 million viewers.

CBS and ABC tied for second in ratings, both with a 1.2/5. CBS was first in total viewers with 6.6 million, ABC was fourth with 4.75 million.

For CBS, “Survivor” at 8 posted a 1.7/7 and 8.4 million viewers. At 9, “Criminal Minds” got a 1.2/5 and 6.8 million viewers. “Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders” at 10 received a 0.8/3 and 4.6 million viewers.

For ABC, “The Goldbergs” at 8 had a 1.4/6 and 5.2 million viewers. At 8:30, “Speechless” got a 1.2/5 and 4.5 million viewers. “Black-ish” at 9 received a 1.2/5 and 4.4 million viewers. A second episode at 9:30 concluded the sitcom block with a 1.2/4 and 4.2 million viewers. “Designated Survivor” at 10 finished primetime to a 1.1/4 and 5.1 million viewers.

NBC was fourth in ratings with a 1.1/4, but second in viewers with 5.3 million. “Blindspot” at 8 had a 0.9/4 and 4.5 million viewers. At 9, “Law & Order: SVU” got a 1.1/4 and 5.3 million viewers. “Chicago PD” at 10 received a 1.2/4 and 6.2 million viewers.

Univision was fifth in ratings with a 0.6/2 and in viewers with 1.7 million.

The CW and Telemundo tied for sixth in ratings, both with a 0.4/2. The CW was sixth in total viewers with 1.2 million, Telemundo was seventh with 1.1 million.

For CW, “Arrow” at 8 managed a 0.5/2 and 1.5 million viewers. At 9, “The 100” settled for a 0.3/1 and 920,000 viewers.