Terry Morrow: Knoxville viewers to 'Idol': We'd rather see Shemar Moore, baby girl

Mariah Carey, Keith Urban, Nicki Minaj and Ryan Seacrest are maybe too odd of a mix for fans of "American Idol" this season.

Photo by Todd Williamson

Mariah Carey, Keith Urban, Nicki Minaj and Ryan Seacrest are maybe too odd of a mix for fans of "American Idol" this season.

This and that from here and there:

'Idol' numbers. If "American Idol" is going to be a watercooler series in its 12th season, which started Wednesday, it will have a long road to trod to get there.

The singing competition got underway with one of its smallest audiences in recent memories for the Knoxville market.

The two-hour season premiere of "Idol" sang out with a 9.5 overnight household rating — strong enough to win the first hour (against a repeat of "NCIS"), but not ample to corner off other competition of the evening.

"Criminal Minds" on CBS, which went face-to-face with "Idol" in the 9 p.m. hour Wednesday, had stronger numbers in the Knoxville market. "Minds" managed 11.1, easily besting "Idol" in that time period.

"Mind" was the most popular primetime offering on Wednesday. For several years now, "Idol" has held that honor.

At 10 p.m., "CSI" nabbed a 9.7 rating ("Idol" ended at 10 p.m.). The "CSI" rating was enough muscle to make it the second-most watched TV prime time offering on Wednesday in the Knoxville market.

Return dates. Mark your calendars for the following shows to be back with new seasons. "Community" on NBC returns at 8 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 7, replacing "30 Rock."

TNT's revival of "Dallas" launches 9 p.m. Monday, Jan. 28. Larry Hagman will be seen in the first six episodes, which is what he completed before his death late last year.

A funeral of JR Ewing, his iconic character, will be aired in mid-March. A bevy of "Dallas" guest stars will do cameos in the episode (including Ted Shackleford and Joan Van Ark, who starred in the "Dallas" spin-off "Knots Landing").

"The Client List," which stars Jennifer Love Hewitt as a prostitute, will return for its second season 10 p.m. on Sunday, March 10. Leading up to "List's" return, Lifetime will air mini-marathons of the series' first season on Sunday, March 3, and Sunday, March 10.

End dates. "30 Rock" wraps its seven-season run on Jan. 31. You can catch past episodes on Comedy Central, though.

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