ABC’s Wednesday comedy block returned strongly last night, while CBS’ presentation of "The People’s Choice Awards" upticked to a two-year high.
After a four-week break from originals, the ABC yukfests came back with a bang, particularly "Modern Family" (4.1/11 among adults 18-49) — the night’s No. 1 show in the demo. That’s the best number for "MF" since its premiere.
That helped ABC’s "Cougar Town" (3.3/8), which finished 18 percent ahead of its last first-run telecast in December and scored its best demo rating since mid-October. Wednesday’s "CT" featured a loudly promoted guest turn by Lisa Kudrow.
In the 8 p.m. hour, back-to-back originals of "The Middle" did OK. The 8 p.m. episode earned a 2.2/6, while an episode in the show’s regular 8:30 slot upticked to a 2.7/7 — the series’ best since its debut.
CBS’ "I Get That a Lot" special, however, dominated the 8 p.m. hour with a 2.9/8. That’s 15 percent below what the concept averaged in its first at-bat last April, but it was earned against much tougher competition.
Meanwhile, "The People’s Choice Awards" earned a 3.4/8 for CBS from 9-11 p.m., up 8 percent from last year and the best performance since 2007.
And at 10 p.m., ABC’s "Ugly Betty" debuted in a new timeslot to a 1.6/5. That’s the best ABC has done in the slot since mid-October and a season high for "Betty," which had been buried on Fridays.