CBS had to settle for a tie for the top spot in the prime-time rankings Thursday night as a show that has been a ratings juggernaut for the network sank to a season low, based on Nielsen overnights for the key 18-49 demo.
TVbytheNumbers.com reports that CBS fell into a tie with ABC for prime time, with both networks registering 2.4 average ratings in viewers 18-49. CBS's "The Big Bang Theory" remained by far the top show on broadcast prime Thursday night, but it lost three-tenths of a point from its rating a week earlier and hit a season low with a 4.6 average.
ABC got solid numbers from "Grey's Anatomy" and "Scandal" to keep pace with CBS. "Scandal" was up one-tenth from last week in the 18-49 demo with a 3.0 average, while "Grey's" drifted down two-tenths to a 2.5.
ABC rolled out a special Thursday installment of "Shark Tank," which improved its 8 p.m. time slot performance but couldn't match the Friday edition of "Tank" that aired last week. The Thursday telecast delivered a 1.6 in viewers 18-49, four-tenths lower than Friday's "Shark Tank" but a big improvement on the 0.9 turned in by the finale of "Once Upon a Time in Wonderland" in the Thursday slot a week ago.
Third-place Fox saw a number of its prime-time shows struggle, as "American Idol" equaled the series low it set last week in the 18-49 demo, a 1.7 average, while "Hell's Kitchen" plummeted four-tenths to a season-low 0.8. "Surviving Jack" ticked along with a 1.2, the same as last week.
Prime time was a ratings bloodbath at NBC, which tied Univision for fourth place overall among the broadcast nets. "Community" fell to an all-time low in adults 18-49 with a 0.8 average, eroding one-tenth from last week, when its 0.9 was at the time a series low.
NBC's "Parks and Recreation" matched its own all-time low with a 1.0 in 18-49, also slipping one-tenth from a week ago. Meanwhile, "Parenthood" also lost one-tenth, equaling its series low with a 1.1 average. Elsewhere on NBC, a "Hollywood Game Night" repeat delivered a 0.9.
For prime time overall, CBS and ABC led the pack, both with 2.4 averages in adults 18-49, followed by Fox (1.4 average) and NBC and Univision (both 1.0). CBS had the edge in total viewers with 9.8 million, ahead of ABC 8.0 million, Fox (5.0 million), NBC (3.0 million) and Univision (2.6 million).
"The Big Bang Theory"