Watch CBSN Live

Nielsens: "Big Bang Theory" Becoming a Hit

It's looking like CBS has a companion hit to go with "Two and a Half Men" on Monday nights.

The audience for summer reruns of the sitcom "The Big Bang Theory" is up 52 percent over last summer. Nielsen Media Research says the show had nearly as many viewers as television's top-rated comedy, "Two and a Half Men."

Summertime second runs are often when a show catches on. That happened last year with "NCIS" on CBS, which last week was the most popular drama on television.

To show you how broadcast TV still has the upper hand: An "NCIS" rerun had more than three times the audience last week of the third-season premiere of AMC's "Mad Men" on cable. And that premiere was the most-watched show in AMC's history.

"Mad Men" - the reigning best-drama Emmy winner - drew 2.8 million people into the world of the 1960s Sterling Cooper ad agency. Add in the viewers who saw the second and third airings later that night, and AMC had a total audience of 4.5 million for the show.

HBO had another record high audience for "True Blood" on Sunday. The pay cable network is building an increasingly strong Sunday night lineup with "Hung" and "Entourage."

The E! Entertainment network's new series, "Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami" on Sunday was that network's most popular series premiere since "The Anna Nicole Show" in 2002.

For the broadcast networks, CBS' "60 Minutes" brought 12 million viewers in to watch Michael Vick's apology on Sunday. It was No. 2, behind NBC's "America's Got Talent," which yet again topped the list.

CBS averaged 6.3 million viewers for the week (4.1 rating, 8 share), while second-place NBC had 5.3 million (3.4, 6). ABC 4.3 million (2.8, 5), Fox 4.1 million (2.5, 5), My Network TV 1.5 million (0.9, 2), the CW 980,000 (0.6, 1) and ION Television 550,000 (0.4, 1).

Among the Spanish-language networks, Univision led with a 3.1 million viewer average (1.6 rating, 3 share), Telemundo had 1.1 million (0.5, 1), TeleFutura 880,000 (0.4, 1) and Azteca 200,000 (0.1, 0).

NBC's "Nightly News" topped the evening newscasts with an average of 7.4 million viewers (4.9, 11). ABC's "World News" was second with 6.7 million (4.5, 10) and the "CBS Evening News" had 5.6 million viewers (3.8, 8).

A ratings point represents 1,145,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation's estimated 114.5 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

For the week of Aug. 10-16, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: "America's Got Talent" (Tuesday), NBC, 12.88 million; "60 Minutes," CBS, 12.03 million; "America's Got Talent" (Wednesday), NBC, 11.79 million; "NCIS," CBS, 9.15 million; "Two and a Half Men," CBS, 8.83 million; "The Big Bang Theory," CBS, 8.64 million; "The Mentalist," CBS, 7.643 million; "Big Brother 11" (Sunday), CBS, 7.636 million; "Big Brother 11" (Thursday), 7.48 million; "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" (Monday), ABC, 7.27 million.

ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Co. CBS is owned by CBS Corp. CW is a joint venture of Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corp. Fox and My Network TV are units of News Corp. NBC and Telemundo are owned by General Electric Co. ION Television is owned by ION Media Networks. TeleFutura is a division of Univision. Azteca America is a wholly owned subsidiary of TV Azteca S.A. de C.V.