“NCIS” ended the 2020-21 official prime-time television season as the most-watched program for the fifth consecutive week and ninth time overall, the only scripted series program to lead a week.
The 18th season finale of the CBS action drama averaged 8.956 million viewers, the most for a prime-time program since the May 4 episode of “NCIS” averaged 9.679 million viewers, according to live-plus-same-day figures released by Nielsen.
In a week that mixed the final three days of the official season and the first four of the summer season, NBC had four of the week’s six most-watched programs to end CBS’ four-week winning streak, averaging 4.02 million viewers from its prime-time programming between May 24 and Sunday.
CBS was second, averaging 3.57 million. The season finales of “9-1-1,” “The Masked Singer” and “9-1-1: Lone Star” enabled Fox to end a 17-week streak of fourth-place finishes among the broadcast networks, averaging 3.03 million viewers for its 16 hours, 45 minutes of prime-time programming.
The last time Fox did not finish fourth was the week of Jan. 18-24.
ABC was fourth, averaging 2.86 million. The CW again was fifth among the five major English-language broadcast networks, averaging 470,000 viewers for its 12 hours of programming.
NBC, ABC and CBS each broadcast 22 hours of prime-time programming.
The back-to-back season finales of NBC’s “Chicago Fire” and “Chicago Med” were second and third for the week, averaging 7.263 million and 7.259 million, respectively. The season finale of the “The Voice,” was fifth for the week, averaging 6.733 million viewers. What NBC billed as the “Part 1” of the finale the night earlier was sixth for the week, averaging 6.552 million.
“9-1-1” was Fox’s most-watched program, averaging 6.346 million viewers, putting it seventh for the week. A “9-1-1” episode was Fox’s most-watched program all 14 weeks it aired this season. “The Masked Singer” was 11th, averaging 5.51 million and “9-1-1: Lone Star” 12th averaging 5.213 million.
ABC’s most-watched program was “Station 19,” 14th for the week, averaging 4.588 million.
The martial arts action-adventure series “Kung Fu” was The CW’s most-watched program for the sixth time in the seven weeks it has aired, averaging 823,000 viewers, 129th among broadcast programs. Its overall rank was not available.
The week’s only premiere on the five major broadcast networks, the Fox dessert-making competition “Crime Scene Kitchen,” was 71st for the week and seventh in its Wednesday 9-10 p.m. time slot, averaging 2.353 million viewers following “The Masked Singer” finale.
For the second consecutive week, a Los Angeles Lakers game was the most-watched cable program, with TNT’s broadcast of Game 2 of the team’s first-round playoff series against the Phoenix Suns averaging 4.016 million viewers, 21st overall.
TNT’s NBA playoff coverage enabled it to end Fox News Channel’s eight-week winning streak among cable networks, averaging 2.412 million viewers, 72.1% more than is 1.391-million average the previous week when it finished third.
Fox News Channel was second, averaging 1.906 million. MSNBC was third, averaging 1.307 million.
The most-watched Spanish-language prime-time program was Univision’s coverage of Sunday’s conclusion of the two-game Liga MX finals where Cruz Azul defeated Santos Laguna on aggregate to win its first title in 24 years which averaged 2.994 million viewers, 40th overall.
Univision was the most-watched Spanish-language network for the 78th consecutive week and 80th time in 81 weeks, averaging 1.46 million viewers. Telemundo was second, averaging 930,000 viewers, followed by UniMas (550,000), Estrella TV (150,000) and Azteca America (50,000).
ABC’s “World News Tonight with David Muir” was the most-watched network nightly newscast for the 78th consecutive week, the 129th time in 130 weeks and the 181st time in 183 weeks, averaging 7.422 million viewers.
“NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt” was second, averaging 6.363 million viewers, followed by the “CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell,” which averaged 4.791 million viewers.
The week’s 10 most-watched prime-time programs were CBS’ “NCIS”; NBC’s “Chicago Fire” and “Chicago Med”; CBS’ “FBI”; the Tuesday and Monday editions of NBC’s “The Voice”; Fox’s “9-1-1”; NBC’s “Chicago P.D.”; CBS’ “60 Minutes Presents”; and CBS’ “FBI: Most Wanted.”