Even on a night when the red-hot "Big Bang Theory" cooled off a little, CBS claimed a ratings win Thursday with its mostly comedy lineup, based on Nielsen overnights for the key 18-49 demo.
TVbytheNumbers.com reports that "Bang" slipped 4% from a week ago to record a 4.9 average rating in 18-49 — still by far the top show on broadcast prime last night. Leading out from "Bang," CBS’s two new Thursday night comedies continued to show early-season strength. "The Millers" was up 7% from last week to a 3.2, while the new Robin Williams sitcom "The Crazy Ones" also rose — 4% to a 2.5.
The bad news for CBS: Onetime comedy juggernaut "Two and a Half Men" and drama series "Elementary" both sank to all-time lows. "Men" fell 9% from a week ago to a 2.1 in the 18-49 demo, while "Elementary" lost 16% to score a 1.6 — less than half the number turned in by its 10 p.m. time slot competitor on ABC, "Scandal."
"Scandal" delivered a 3.3 average for ABC in 18-49, improving 6% from a week ago. But the rest of prime time was all about bad news for ABC, with "Grey’s Anatomy" equaling its series low with a 2.6, off 7% from the previous week, while the newcomer "Once Upon a Time in Wonderland" had a troubling 29% falloff from last week’s premiere, turning in a feeble 1.2.
Tying ABC for second place overall was Fox, which scored a 2.4 average in adults 18-49 with its Major League Baseball playoffs.
NBC was mostly up, but it has a long way to go to catch its broadcast rivals on Thursday nights and finished in fifth place behind Univision. "Parks and Recreation" rose 8% from a week ago in 18-49 to a 1.3, "Welcome to the Family" surged 13% to a 0.9, "Sean Saves the World" climbed 10% to a 1.1 and "Parenthood" was up 8% to a 1.3, while "The Michael J. Fox Show" equaled last week’s number, a 1.2.
For prime time overall, CBS took a narrow win with a 2.6 average in adults 18-49, ahead of Fox and ABC, tied with 2.4 averages, then Univision (1.4) and NBC (1.2). CBS was comfortably ahead in total viewers, averaging 10.7 million to lead Fox (8.9 million), ABC (7.5 million), NBC (3.415 million) and Univision (3.366 million).