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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Wed., Jan. 16) --Idol still dealing Fox a winning hand

Fox can exhale a bit -- at least for now.

The network's Season 12 premiere of American Idol dominated D-FW's prime-time Nielsens Wednesday, with new judges Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj and Keith Urban up for inspection among the nobodies vying for their affection.

The 7 to 9 p.m. relaunch averaged 536,968 viewers, with 261,531 of them in the advertiser-prized 18-to-49 age range. The total viewer tally is down a bit from the 562,250 who watched last season's two-hour premiere. But the 18-to-49 number is an improvement over last January's 246,577 total. And that's the only number Fox really cares about.

CBS' new episode of Criminal Minds offered the strongest resistance, drawing 371,747 total viewers in the 8 p.m. hour. But only 124,387 of them were 18-to-49-year-olds.

CBS' CSI: Crime Scene Investigation won the 9 p.m. hour in total viewers with 296,021. Fox4's 9 p.m. local newscast ran a dominant first with 18-to-49-yar-olds (124,387).

NBC punted with an all-repeat lineup that ran fourth all night in both ratings measurements.

Here are Wednesday's local news derby results:

Fox4 had a big day, sweeping the 6 a.m. and 5 p.m. Nielsens in total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming. The station added 6 and 10 p.m. wins in the 25-to-54 demographic.

CBS11 logged the other two firsts, with total viewer wins at 6 and 10 p.m.