Morning Ratings Flash - Rick Kissell

“Average Joe,” NBC’s reality-series answer to Fox’s “Joe Millionaire,” debuted to strong ratings Monday despite going up against the highest-rated episode of CBS drama “CSI: Miami” this season, according to preliminary nationals from Nielsen. The Peacock and Eye nets tied for the night’s lead in adults 18-49.

At 10, “Average Joe” (5.8/15 in adults 18-49, 11.1 million viewers overall) was a solid second to “CSI: Miami” (6.9/18 in adults 18-49, 19.6 million viewers overall), which was the night’s top-rated program. This was the best delivery for “CSI: Miami” this season and the strongest regular-program score for NBC in the hour in about 18 months.

NBC also did well at 8 with “Fear Factor” (season-high 6.1/16 in adults 18-49, 13.9 million viewers overall) and at 9 with best-since-preem scores for “Las Vegas” (4.8/10 in adults 18-49, 11.6 million viewers overall).

CBS was again strong from 9 to 10 with “Everybody Loves Raymond” (6.2/15 in adults 18-49, 18.9 million viewers overall) and “Two and a Half Men” (5.5/13 in adults 18-49, 16 million viewers overall).

Reliable numbers weren’t available for ABC’s programs, but the net’s “Primetime” special at 8 and “Monday Night Football” from 9 to 11 will put the net on top for the night in male demos.

Fox drama “Skin” (1.8/4 in adults 18-49, 4 million viewers overall) again looked weak, finishing in virtual demos ties for the hour with the WB and UPN. Net’s “Next Joe Millionaire” (2.6/7 in adults 18-49, 6 million viewers overall) again ran fourth from 8 to 9.

Preliminary 18-49 averages: CBS, 5.6/14; NBC, 5.6/14; ABC, 5.2/13; Fox, 2.2/6; WB, 2.0/5; UPN, 1.5/4.

In total viewers: CBS, 16.3 million; ABC, 15.3 million; NBC, 12.2 million; WB, 6.1 million; Fox, 5.0 million; UPN, 3.6 million.

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