ABC's The Bachelorette, which has always been a kind of bridesmaid and never the bride since its spinoff from the bachelor in 2003, finally got the ring last week as it topped the Nielsen weekly ratings list for the first time since its debut. The season finale, in which Ali Fedotowsky said yes to Roberto Martinez, was watched by 11.7 million people -- that's a lot during the summer doldrums. (Last season's finale was watched by 10 million.) Meanwhile, NBC remained on the comeback trail as America's Got Talent and NFL football gave it a second-place finish for the week. Nevertheless, CBS continued to lead in average total viewers despite a schedule dominated by reruns. Among the nightly newscasts, NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams stayed ahead of the competiton with 7.2 million viewers, but ABC's World News with Diane Sawyer closed in with 6.9 million viewers. CBS News with Katie Couric remained a distance third with 5 million. For the week CBS finished with a 4.0 rating and a 7 share. NBC placed second with a 3.5/6. With just 200,000 fewer viewers than NBC, ABC also finished with a 3.5/6. Fox trailed with a 2.8/5.
The top ten shows of the week according to Nielsen Research 1. The Bachelorette , ABC, 7.5/13; 2. The Bachelorette After the Rose , ABC, 7.4/13; 3. NFL Pre-season Football Cincinnati vs. Dallas, NBC, 6.8/12; 4. 60 Minutes , CBS, 6.3/12; 5. America's Got Talent (Tuesday), NBC, 6.0/10; 6. NCIS, CBS, 5.9/11; 6. America's Got Talent (Wednesday), NBC, 5.9/10; 8. NFL Preseason/Pre-Kick-Off, NBC, 5.8/11; 9. The Big Bang Theory , CBS, 5.4/9; 10. Two and a Half Men , CBS, 5.2/8.