CBS won the battle of the New York cop shows Wednesday night.
The Eye network scored a major ratings victory over the Peacock when its spin-off, CSI: N.Y., dethroned NBC’s Law & Order as the night’s top drama.
The mega-franchises faced off at 10 p.m. with the premiere of CSI: N.Y. vs. the second of back-to-back episodes of Law & Order, which debuted at 9-10 (West Wing has yet to debut in that time period), then ran a new episode at 10-11 as well.
CSI pulled in 18.51 million viewers, a 6.9 rating in the key 18-49 demo and an 8.1 rating in 25-54s, according to preliminary Nielsen data. Law & Order at 10-11 attracted 15.7 million viewers and a 5.5 rating in 18-49s.
Law & Order's premiere won its time period, faring better against a Dr. Phil Special on CBS (Dr. Phil is syndicated by King World, which is owned by Viacom, which also owns CBS) and The Bachelor on ABC. Law & Order at 9 p.m. drew 18.4 million viewers and a 6.2 rating in adults 18-49. NBC's other cop drama on the night, Hawaii, continues to struggle at 8 p.m., with 7.4 million viewers and a 2.2 rating in 18-49s. That was only good enough for fifth in the time period, convincingly beaten by The WB's Smallville in the demo (2.7)
Wednesday night delivered some good news for ABC. New thriller drama Lost premiered strong at 8 p.m., delivering 18.01 million viewers and a 6.5 rating in adults 18-49 to win its time period handily--the first hour of Dr. Phil was second with a 3.3 rating/10 share. But much of that lead-in was lost for the two-hour Bachelor season premiere at 9 p.m. The reality show averaged 8.47 million viewers and a 3.8 rating in 18-49s.
UPN’s new season of America’s Next Top Model delivered 3.7 million viewers and a 3.5 rating in women 12-34, its target demo. Its lead-out, Veronica Mars, faded a bit, with 2.1 million viewers and a 1.8 rating for women 12 to 34. On the WB, Smallville soared and scored with 5.5 million viewers and a 3.0 rating in adults 12-34. It's a18-49 number was good enough for third in the time period, beating both Fox and NBC.
The series debut of new teen drama, The Mountain, collected 4.1 million viewers and a 2.0 rating in its target 12-34s.