Wild Card Week was seen by an average of 12.23m (48.5%) between 7.40pm and 10.10pm, peaking at 13.49m (51.7%) between 9.15pm and 9.30pm. The X Factor was up 530k on last Saturday.
Meanwhile, Strictly Come Dancing rose 310k week-on-week to 9.03m (42.1%), despite airing in the earlier timeslot of 5.45pm, recording a peak of 10.27m (43.3%) at 9.30pm. Finishing at 7.45pm, the lead-in helped Merlin hold a respectable 5.36m (21.1%) for The Crystal Cave opposite X Factor.
Strictly washed away ITV opposition in the early evening, as All Star Family Fortunes picked up 2.86m (14.2%) at 6pm, You've Been Framed amused 3.97m (18%) at 6.45pm, and Harry Hill's TV Burp returned with 5.65m (23.8%).
Post-X Factor, Piers Morgan's Life Stores interested 4.42m (23%) for an edition on Barbara Windsor. Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow dipped to 3.85m (19%) at the same time over on BBC One.
Earlier, The National Lottery: In It To Win It grabbed 4.08m (16.2%) at 8.30pm, then an episode of Casualty titled 'Eliminate The Negative' appealed to 4m (15.8%) at 9.20pm.
Away from the main networks, BBC Two took the spoils, with 1.33m (5.2%) for Coast, 1.58m (6.2%) for Dad's Army, 1.38m (5.4%) for The First Blitz, and 1.35m (6.5%) for QI: XL. Die Hard 4 managed 1.72m (8.5%) for Channel 4, and 366k on timeshift, while prior to that Headhunters of World War II fetched 792k (3.1%).
Over on Five, NCIS pulled in 888k (3.5%) at 8.15pm, after which a CSI double bill attracted 742k (2.9%) and 986k (5%) respectively.
Overall, ITV1 owned primetime with an average share of 38% (HD: 2.3%) to BBC One's 21.6%. BBC Two was third with 5.3%, Channel 4 followed with 4.5% (+1: 0.5%), and 3.3% put Five last.
Elsewhere, The Xtra Factor was the most-watched multichannel show of the day, with 917k (5.4%).
BARB ratings data supplied by Attentional