CBS cleaned up in Wednesday's prime time with a strong return by CSI: NY and Criminal Minds, as well as an encouraging start for the nuclear-war drama Jericho.
Despite losing the 8 p.m. hour to ABC's Dancing With the Stars, CBS won the night in viewership and the adults 18-49 demographic. It outdistanced a two-hour Grey's Anatomy repeat that did pretty well ahead of Thursday's season premiere, and CBS buried Fox and NBC's premiere of Kidnapped.
CSI: NY (16.1 million viewers, 5.0 rating/14 share) was the night's top show in viewers and the key demographic, according to data released Thursday by Nielsen Media Research. The 10 p.m. investigative drama left Grey's (10.5 million, 3.8/10) in the dust, though the medical drama did well for a repeat. CSI: NY was up 21 percent in viewership and 11 percent in the demo compared with its season premiere last year.
But more worrisome was NBC's Kidnapped, which could find only 7.6 million viewers and a 2.8/8 in adults 18-49.
Dancing (15 million, 3.7/11) was the unquestionable winner at 8 p.m., though Jericho (11.7 million, 3.4/10) got off to a good start against both Dancing and NBC's two-hour premiere of The Biggest Loser (7.2 million, 3.1/9). Fox's Bones (7.5 million, 2.5/8) didn't do as well.
Beyond the strong number against Dancing, CBS executives had other things to cheer about with Jericho. The dark drama outpaced its cheerful counterparts--Still Standing and Yes, Dear--by 48 percent in adults 18-49 and 71 percent in viewership. It was the best performance in the time period for CBS since January 2004's 60 Minutes Wednesday.
The 9 p.m. hour belonged to Criminal Minds, which averaged 15.6 million viewers and a 4.5/12. That not only was well above everything else, it also was the best viewership for the show since January and up 48 percent compared with its premiere last September.