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‘Big Brother’ Tops Thursday Ratings Against Slew Of Specials

Patrick Hipes

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CBS’ Big Brother (1.1 rating in the adults 18-49 demographic, 4.41 million viewers) was the highest-rated show in primetime Thursday, a night filled with specials, pennant-stretch baseball and a bit of NFL overrun.

The 9 PM Thursday edition of Big Brother was predictably up, by a tenth, over Wednesday’s 8 PM episode which went head to head with the season finale of America’s Got Talent. In viewers it was tops among original programming, though it was beaten by a couple of Young Sheldon repeats and a rerun of ABC’s Celebrity Family Feud, which may have gotten a boost from the Jacksonville-Tennessee NFL overrun in the Jaguars’ home market.

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Speaking of sports, Fox showed MLB games (0.7, 3.06M) with postseason implications, with most of the country getting St. Louis-Chicago under the lights at Wrigley Field.

NBC aired a pair of specials tied to upcoming events, starting with Return to Downton Abbey: A Grand Event (0.4, 2.83M). It comes ahead of the film’s opening box office weekend (it began solidly in previews last night). It led into The Paley Center Salutes The Good Place (0.2, 1.34M), ahead of the network’s critical hit returning for its final season later this fall.

ABC meanwhile aired a two-hour special, ABC News’ The Last Days of Phil Hartman (0.7, 3.93M), which nipped at Big Brother’s heels at 9 PM. In the early numbers, it was ABC that won the night in total viewers and finished in a three-way tie in the demo with NBC and CBS.

The CW offered up a fresh The Outpost (0.2, 1.25M) and popped with the season finale of Two Sentence Horror Stories (0.2, 1.11M).

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