The ABC reality show American Inventor had seen good ratings in the past couple of weeks when it went up against college basketball. The return of CBS's forensic crime drama CSI put an end to all of that.
CSI returned to the schedule with an average 8.0 rating, easily outdistancing time-slot competitor Inventor, which nabbed an average 3.75 for the hour. Inventor was down considerably from the past two weeks when it averaged a 5.3 rating. More telling is the fact that in the previous two weeks, Inventor bested NBC comedies Earl and Office, but last night Inventor wound up third for the hour, behind them.
At 8 p.m., CBS's Survivor took the lead with a 5.4, followed by NBC and a Britney Spears-episode of Will & Grace at 3.6, a rerepeat of That '70s Show on Fox at 2.4, ABC with Extreme Makeover: Home Edition--After the Storm at 2.0 (check out our Ty Pennington interview), WB's Smallville at 1.7, and a repeat of UPN's Everybody Hates Chris at 1.1.
8:30 p.m. saw Survivor grow its lead to 6.4, NBC's My Name Is Earl repeat up next at 3.4, ABC and After the Storm at 2.4, Smallville at 2.1, Fox's The Loop with a 2.0, and UPN's repeat of Love Inc. at .8
In the 9 p.m. slot, CSI investigated a 7.7, a new My Name Is Earl earned 4.4, American Inventor conjured up 3.4, Fox's The O.C. juiced it up at 2.6, WB's Supernatural took 1.5, and a repeat of Eve on UPN snagged a .7.
At 9:30 p.m., CSI grew to an 8.2, American Inventor tied with NBC's The Office at a 4.1, The O.C. maintained a 2.6, Supernatural dipped to 1.4, and a repeat of Cuts on UPN snipped a .7.
10 p.m. saw controversial drama Without A Trace notch a 5.9, NBC's venerable hospital drama ER took a 5.5, and tabloid newsmagazine Primetime: Live earned a 3.0.
At 10:30 p.m., ER surged ahead with a 5.8, Without A Trace dipped to 5.4, and Primetime: Live slipped to 2.4.
For the night, the network averages were CBS at 6.5, NBC at 4.5, ABC with 2.9, Fox grabbing 2.4, The WB taking 1.7, and UPN trailing at .8.