NBC, CBS dominate Thursday

Morning Ratings Flash - Rick Kissell

NBC’s “Friends” and CBS’ “CSI” were the top-rated programs on Thursday as their respective nets waged another close battle in key demos, according to preliminary nationals from Nielsen. NBC won the night by 12% in adults 18-49, while CBS eked ahead by the narrowest of margins in adults 25-54 in addition to an easy victory in total viewers.

“Friends” (9.7/27 in adults 18-49, 20.5 million viewers overall) defeated its combined ABC-CBS-Fox competish at 8 in adults 18-49, while the net’s “Scrubs” (7.6/20 in adults 18-49), “Will & Grace” (7.7/19) and “Good Morning Miami” (5.7/14) each placed second to the CBS combo of “Survivor” (7.4/20 in adults 18-49, 18.4 million viewers) and “CSI” (9.2/23 in adults 18-49, 25.9 million viewers).

At 10, NBC’s “ER” (8.9/24 in adults 18-49, 19.1 million viewers overall), despite a firstrun season low, nearly matched the combined 18-49 scores of CBS’ “Without a Trace” (4.9/13 in adults 18-49, 13.6 million viewers overall) and ABC’s “Primetime” (4.1/11 in adults 18-49, 11.4 million viewers overall). “Primetime,” featuring an interview with Lisa Marie Presley, delivered its second best scores of the season and was up about 40% vs. its averages.

Fox did 4 shares with both its “Married by America” repeat and newsmag “The Pulse.”

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: NBC, 8.1/21; CBS, 7.2/18; ABC, 2.8/7; Fox, 1.5/4.

CBS led in total viewers with an average of 19.9 million.

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