Things didn't start out well for Ben Flajnik, and not just because he was greeted with a cheesy (bacon-y?) come-on.
The Bachelor's 16th season launched to franchise-low ratings.
But things are looking up for Flajnik, and not just because he got to enjoy the wonder that is bikini-skiing.
Last night's Bachelor averaged 8.2 million overall viewers, and a 2.7 rating among 18-to-49-year-olds, per estimates. Both numbers are season highs.
The Nielsen turnaround started last week. (See: bikini skiing.) Four episodes in, Flajnik's Bachelor is finally approaching last year's Brad Womack edition.
And with Amber Bacon long gone, there's no (less?) danger of more breakfast-food lines.
Here's a look at the other ratings winners—and losers, per the latest overnight and weekly rankings:
• Alcatraz: A Top 20 start last week; a good hold last night.
• House: If the Hugh Laurie series lives on, Monday's winning performance (8.7 million viewers, 3.1 demo rating) should get some credit.
• American Idol: As expected, the franchise's much-maligned season premiere was TV's No. 1 non-sports show.
• Men in tight pants: A few people watched Sunday's two Super Bowl-deciding football games. And by a few, we mean a combined average audience of 106.3 million.
• Betty White and Snooki: They just keep going and going. White's birthday special was a Top 10 broadcast hit, its rerun was a Saturday-night hit, and the premiere of the actress' new series, Off Their Rockers, was a Top 15 broadcast hit. Jersey Shore, meanwhile, was cable's No. 1 show (with 6.2 million viewers).
• Revenge: Up a touch from its last episode, to a 2.5 demo rating.
• Glee: Returned from Christmas break in solid shape, with a 3.1 demo rating.
• New Girl: Returned from Christmas break in super-solid shape, with a 3.4 demo rating.
• Parks & Recreation: Paul Rudd might not be good for Pawnee, but he was good for business—the comedy scored its biggest audience (4.3 million) since September.
• The Finder: Up nearly 30 percent in the demo, to a 2.2, from its premiere. (Thanks, American Idol!)
• Are You There, Chelsea?: Down more than 25 percent in the demo, to a 1.7, from its premiere.
• The Firm and Prime Suspect: NBC's new 10 p.m. Thursday show drew a sub-1.0 demo rating; NBC's old 10 p.m. Thursday show, burning off its final episodes on Sunday, drew two sub-1.0 demo ratings.
Here's a complete look at the TV week's top 10 most-watched broadcast shows: