‘Modern Family’ Soars, ‘Idol’ Scores

Hawaiian holiday storyline boosts ABC sitcom to top scripted series of Wednesday night

A trip to Hawaii sent ABC’s “Modern Family” (4.2/11, 10.1 million) to its most-watched telecast in more than four months and made it the top scripted show of Wednesday night in the key 18-49 demographic.

As usual, however, Fox’s “American Idol” (6.4/17, 19.1 million viewers) won the night in both the demo and total viewers.

In preliminary Nielsen numbers, Fox was tops for Wednesday in both 18-49 average (3.9/11) and total viewers (12.1m). CBS (2.6/8, 10.4m) was second in both measures. The other nets: ABC beat NBC in the demo, 2.2/6 to 2.0/6, but it was the other way around in total viewers, with NBC (6.4m) Jesse Tyler Ferguson Modern Family Hawaii ABCoutdrawing ABC (6m).

WHAT, NO TARANTULAS?: The classic sitcom trip to Hawaii – in this case a birthday celebration – lifted “Modern Family” 75 percent over its lead-in, itself a strong episode of “The Middle” (2.4/7, 7.4m). “Modern Family” beat “American Idol” for the first time among men 18-34. “Cougar Town” (2.6/7, 6.1m) showed a little growth at 9:30, although it lost a chunk of its lead-in, but about-to-go-on-hiatus “Happy Town” (1.2/3, 3.2m) was flat at 10 p.m.

‘MINUTE’ WINS IT: In the 8 p.m. hour, an original episode of “Minute to Win It” (2.2/7, 6.7m) tied for the lead in 18-49 with the network’s best delivery in the hour (except for Olympics) in five months. It went up against The CW’s two-hour finale of “America’s Next Top Model” (1.7/5, 3.8m), which gave that network its best Wednesday in 14 months and led all networks in The CW’s target demo of adults 18-34 (1.8/7) in its regular 8 p.m. hour. Rookie drama “Mercy” (1.1/3, 4.1m) fell off a cliff at 9 p.m. for NBC, but “Law & Order: SVU” (2.8/8, 8.5m) restored some order at 10.

‘CHRISTINE’ – AU REVOIR OR ADIOS?: CBS saw a bit of a bump for the season finale of bubble show "The New Adventures of Old Christine" (1.9/6, 7.2m). The show’s future remains unclear at this point. A repeat of “The Big Bang Theory” scored a 2.0/6 and 6.7 million viewers outside its regular timeslot. CBS then aired "Criminal Minds" (3.4/9, 12.9m) and "CSI: NY" (2.5/7, 11.4m); latter was second in the demo and first in total viewers for the hour.