Fox has tried out many a show on Friday nights over the years, from comedies to dramas to unscripted shows, with little success, but it may have finally found an unlikely combo that works in the Gordon Ramsay reality show "Kitchen Nightmares" and supernatural thriller "Fringe."
The network overshadowed the series finale of CBS's long-running drama "Medium" with a rare Friday victory, airing the night's two top-rated shows.
Fox averaged a 1.9 adults 18-49 rating and 6 share, according to Nielsen overnights, the network's best non-sports Friday night since September 2008, double its season average on Fridays, and 36 percent ahead of No. 2 ABC, which averaged a 1.4/5.
"Nightmares" and "Fringe" both won their timeslots with identical 1.9 ratings. Both shows were up from their most recent airing, which is interesting for "Fringe." That show had been airing on Thursdays, when TV audiences are much bigger, but the competition is much fiercer.
"Fringe's" 12 percent bump over its last Thursday outing would seem to underline the devotion of the cult show's audience, which Fox will take into account when deciding if the show warrants a fourth season.
At 9 p.m., "Fringe" kept Fox in first with a 1.9. ABC's "Primetime: What Would You Do" moved into second with a 1.7, followed by Univision's "Triunfo del Amor" in third place at 1.5. NBC's "Dateline NBC" was fourth at 1.3, CBS's "CSI: NY" rerun fifth at 1.1, and the CW's "Supernatural" rerun sixth at 0.5.