The figures are available for the recently concluded 2021-22 TV season.
As we enter the summer programming break, it’s a good time to take a look back at what viewers saw in prime time on network television during the period from last September through mid-May.
With so many viewing options on so many different platforms, the days of a network series that generated blockbuster viewership seem long gone — even with delayed viewership — but these drama, comedy, and reality shows have managed to garner a good chunk of their allegiance to retain viewers in the age of digital television and a fragmented viewer landscape.
Here are the top 5 shows in each genre on the networks, based on their average weekly total viewership (according to Nielsen).
“NCIS” (CBS): 11 million.
“FBI” (CBS): 10.4 million.
Chicago Fire (NBC): 9.9 million.
“Blue Bloods” (CBS): 9.8 million.
The Equalizer (CBS): 9.5 million.
Yes, I know it’s a cable show, but there’s no way to ignore the impact of this Kevin Costner drama, which not only surpassed its closest competitor by 300,000 viewers, but has already spawned a prequel – ‘1883’ ( starring Tim McGraw and Faith Hill) – and two spin-offs in the works by series creator Taylor Sheridan: 1932 and 6666.
Yellowstone (Paramount Network): 11.3 million.
Chicago PD (NBC): 9.3 million.
Chicago Med (NBC): 9.2 million.
FBI: Most Wanted (CBS): 8.8 million.
NCIS: Hawaii (CBS): 8.3 million
“FBI: International” (CBS): 8.3 million
“Young Sheldon” (CBS): 9.2 million.
“Ghosts” (CBS): 8.4 million.
“The Neighborhood” (CBS): 6.8 million.
Bob Hearts Abishola (CBS): 6.7 million.
“US of Al” (CBS): 5.9 million. Canceled after two seasons.
“B-positive” (CBS): 5.7 million. Canceled after two seasons.
“The Conners” (ABC): 4.8 million.
How We Roll (CBS): 4.2 million. Entry into the post-season (March 31). Cancelled.
“The Goldbergs” (ABC): 3.9 million.
Abbott Elementary (ABC): 3.8 million.
“The Voice” (NBC, Tuesday edition): 8.3 million.
“Survivors” (CBS): 7.4 million.
“American Idol” (ABC, Monday edition): 6.9 million.
Dancing With the Stars (ABC): 6.3 million.
“The Masked Singer” (Fox): 5.9 million.
The Amazing Race (CBS): 5.5 million.
America’s Funniest Home Videos (ABC): 5.1 million.
Shark Tank (ABC): 4.5 million.
“The Bachelor” (ABC): 4.5 million.
AGT Extreme (NBC): 4 million.
TOTAL VIEWERS (COMPARISON TO PREVIOUS YEAR):
CBS: 6.2 million. Even.
NBC: 5.9 million. 14 percent up.
Fox: 4.5 million. 7 percent up.
ABC: 4.2 million. minus 10 percent.