Nielsen ratings: 'Lost' regains its footing; Super Bowl rules

Finding Lost. The sixth-season opener of ABC’s Lost averaged 12.1 million viewers Tuesday. though the 6% increase was modest given the end-of-an-era hype, it was the first year-to-year gain since 2005.

Idol tryouts. This year’s eight audition episodes of Fox’s American Idol averaged 26.2 million viewers, down 6% from the 27.9 million for the six tryout episodes that aired last year, which fell 4% from 2008.

Super Bowl ads. They’re always popular during the game, but CBS’ Super Bowl’s Greatest Commercials drew a time-slot-winning 11 million viewers Wednesday, the special’s largest audience since 2004.

Cable openers. The season premiere of TLC’s 19 Kids and Counting counted 2.4 million viewers Tuesday. Others: BET‘s Michael Vick Project (1.7 million Tuesday); Comedy Central’s Thursday duo Important Things with Demetri Martin (1.1 million, down from 2.4 million last year) and Sarah Silverman Program (767,000); HBO movie Temple Grandin (1.2 million Saturday); and Bravo’s Shear Genius (1.1 million Wednesday).

Fox box. The time-slot premiere of Fox’s Human Target netted a worst-yet (though second-place) 7.8 million viewers Wednesday; Kitchen Nightmares returned with a best-yet 9 million Tuesday but sunk to 4 million in Friday’s regular berth; and Fringe‘s winter finale (7.4 million Thursday) was down from last week’s season high.

Nielsen ratings: ‘Lost’ regains its footing; Super Bowl rules

Nielsen ratings: 'Lost' regains its footing; Super Bowl rules

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