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How Broadcast Nets Rank (So Far) Sans Sports, News

Fox drops from first to fourth in TV ratings when counting only entertainment programming

Live sports and “Empire” — that’s what Fox does. Or at least, that’s what has made the broadcast network a surprising No. 1 for the still-young fall TV season.

Take away those NFL overruns and a classic 2016 World Series, however, and it’s a very different story. Remove news programming, as well, and you’ve got completely different rankings for entertainment series-only. And in case you were wondering, that’s a legitimate way to measure these things.

Through seven weeks, NBC is actually tops in entertainment programming, averaging a 2.0 rating among adults 18-49 — the key demographic for advertisers. That number includes seven days of delayed viewing, where available. This year, it’s worth specifying that these numbers do¬†not include the presidential and vice presidential debates.

Fox drops all the way from first to fourth, with a 1.7 average primetime rating. CBS and ABC, each with a 1.8, are tied between the bookends.

Here are the entertainment-only rankings, along with their respective changes from this time last year.
1. NBC: 2.0 (-5%)
2. (tie) CBS: 1.8 (-10%) and ABC: 1.8 (-22%)
4. Fox: 1.7 (-15%)

In addition to “The Voice,” “This Is Us” has carried NBC to the top podium. With a 4.6 average demo rating and 14.3 million total viewers, the freshman drama is the top new series of the season, and No. 3 overall, behind “Empire” and “The Big Bang Theory.” The fourth biggest show on broadcast TV is “Modern Family,” giving each of the Big 4 one apiece at the top of the sheets.