Friday, Jan. 5 was a good night for the TV business, as thousands of snowed-in viewers tuned in for the mid-season return of their favorite shows.
Overall, CBS stole the night. At 7 p.m., MacGyver returned from hiatus, and 7.86 million people tuned in. Admittedly, that's only a tenth of a point higher than their mid-season finale in the Nielsen ratings, but it was way ahead of the competition.
Hawaii Five-O had an incredible comeback, at 9.9 million total viewers. Many must have stayed tuned in to CBS afterwards for Blue Bloods, which returned to an audience of 9.88 million.
On ABC, the trend wasn't as positive. Child Support drew 4.39 million sets of eyes, while the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. return only managed 2.48 million, but did see an improvement from the last half of the season. The numbers spiked again at 10 p.m., when 4.17 million people tuned in for 20/20. It's also worth noting that these are the Broadcast primetime live and same-day ratings, which are only a small portion of the viewership these days. A show like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will continue to gain purchase throughout the week on Hulu and other platforms.
Meanwhile, NBC was drawing a huge portion of the audience away with a live event. The U.S. Figure Skating Championships were on from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., and they drew 4.49 million viewers. It's hard to say where this audience might have turned otherwise, but it doubtlessly gives a bit of leeway to the shows that didn't hit their mark last night on other networks.
Finally, The CW came up last, with about 700,000 viewers for Crazy Ex-Girlfriend at 8 p.m. Things picked up a little at 9 p.m. with Penn and Teller: Fool Us, which managed about 950,000 viewers, but overall the network had a rough night.