CBS was the Wednesday ratings winner for the second week in a row, but the big stories were the strong premiere of "Law & Order: Los Angeles" and dangerously dropping numbers for "Undercovers" and "The Whole Truth."
Meanwhile, every show except Fox's "Hell's Kitchen" was down after heavily promoted season premieres last week.
• NBC's new "Law & Order: Los Angeles" beat out fellow freshmen "The Defenders" and "The Whole Truth," winning the 9-10 p.m. hour with its series premiere. "LOLA" scored a 3.1 rating/9 share in the key adults 18-49 demographic.
"Undercovers," NBC's other new show, didn't fare nearly as well. The second episode of J.J. Abrams' spy thriller scored a 1.6/5, down 24 percent from its disappointing debut. After two weeks of disappointing numbers, "Undercovers" is in a pretty precarious position. Overall, NBC got third place with a 2.5/7 primetime average.
• ABC's shows were all down an average of 13 percent from last week's season debuts. Despite the drop, "Modern Family" was still a strong Wednesday anchor for ABC. "Modern Family" was the top show of the night with a 4.5/12. ABC's new comedy "Better With You" posted a 2.1/6, shedding about 12 percent of the viewers who tuned in for its 8 p.m. lead-in, "The Middle." The network's other new show, "The Whole Truth," landed in last place from 10-11 p.m. with a 1.3/4. "The Whole Truth" was down 13 percent from last week's already awful premiere numbers. This show might not make it to Thanksgiving, or even Halloween.
• CBS won the night with a 3.2/9 average from 8-11 p.m. with "Survivor: Nicaragua," "Criminal Minds" and "The Defenders." CBS was down 13 percent from its premiere week numbers, but that's to be expected coming off of premiere week and the network clearly has a successful formula for Wednesday night wins..
• Fox got second place on the podium with two hours of the cooking competition "Hell's Kitchen" and a 2.9/9 average.