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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Wed., Jan. 16)

American Idol's Dallas auditions and Fox4's 9 p.m. newscast, which again caught a big tailwind, rocketed through Wednesday's D-FW Nielsens.

Idol commanded 479,981 total homes in more than doubling the crowd for any competing program. The 9 p.m. news on Fox4 then drew 294,471 homes to easily outdraw everything against it. Fox4's featured newscast also won handily among two key advertiser target audiences, 18-to-49-year-olds and 25-to-54-year-olds.

The concluding two hours of CBS' Comanche Moon miniseries held up well under the circumstances, averaging 241,124 homes overall and perking up after Idol ended at 9 p.m. The night's big loser, ABC's new Cashmere Mafia, managed just 97,424 homes at 9 p.m. to run fourth across the board.

Some wide swings in audience preferences for Idol and Comanche Moon are worth telescoping. Here's how it played out among young and old:

12-to-17-year-olds -- 64,960
18-to-34-year-olds -- 136,553
18-to-49-year-olds -- 381,561
25-to-54-year-olds -- 394,456
55 years and older -- 209,600

12-to-17-year-olds -- 406 (no, that's not a misprint)
18-to-34-year-olds -- 25,704
18-to-49-year-olds -- 110,369
25-to-54-year-olds -- 144,281
55 years and older -- 256,000

In the local news derby, Belo8's 10 p.m. presentation again made news by overcoming significant lead-in advantages across the board. It won in both total homes and with 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming. Fox4's 10 p.m. news slid to fourth place in both measurements, while NBC5 finished second.

Perhaps you're wondering -- or maybe not -- whether any 12-to-17-year-olds watch the 10 p.m. news. And how do those numbers compare to their parents or grandparents in the 55 years and older demographic. Here's the breakdown:

Belo8 -- 6,380
CBS11 -- 1,740
Fox4 and NBC5 -- "hashmarks" (no measurable audience)

CBS11 -- 160,000
NBC5 -- 144,000
Belo8 -- 142,400
Fox4 -- 110,400

In the other three major local news faceoffs Fox4 and Belo8 tied at 6 a.m. in total homes, with Fox4 nipping Belo8 among 25-to-54-year-olds. The 7 to 9 a.m. portion of Fox4's Good Day then beat the network morning shows in both measurements for the third consecutive weekday.

Belo8 had twin wins at 6 p.m. and also finished first in total homes at 5 p.m. The ABC station and NBC5 tied at the earlier hour among 25-to-54-year-olds.