Morning Ratings Flash -- Rick Kissell

CBS was an easy Thursday winner for a fifth straight time to start the season, winning the night in all ratings categories behind a dominant “CSI” and “Survivor” and another solid outing from “Without a Trace.”

According to preliminary nationals from Nielsen, “CSI” (9.3 rating/24 share in adults 18-49, 27.5 million viewers overall) towered over the competish at 9, and “Survivor: Guatemala” (6.1/17 in 18-49, 17.7 million viewers overall) did the same at 8. “Without a Trace” (6.2/16 in 18-49, 19.9 million viewers overall) lagged NBC’s “ER” in 18-49 (6.5/17, 14.5 million viewers overall) but won easily as usual in total viewers.

The Peacock again got off to a slow start at 8 with “Joey” (2.8/8 in 18-49, 7.7 million viewers overall), picked up a bit at 8:30 with “Will & Grace” (3.3/9 in 18-49, 8 million viewers overall) and then assumed a solid second-place position at 9 with “The Apprentice 4” (4.8/12 in 18-49, 10.4 million viewers overall).

ABC continued to have trouble getting anything going on the night with “Alias” (2.2/6 in 18-49, 6.8 million viewers overall) and “Night Stalker” (1.7/4 in 18-49, 4.5 million viewers overall), and Fox averaged a mere 1 rating/3 share in adults 18-49 with a pair of “Reunion” repeats.

Of note at the weblets, “Smallville” (2.9/8 in 18-49, 6.3 million viewers overall) hit season highs at 8 for the WB, ranking third in 18-49, second in 18-34 and first in males 12-34. At UPN, “Everybody Hates Chris” (2.1/6 in 18-49, 5.4 million viewers overall) was a bit below its average, placing fourth in 18-34.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: CBS, 7.2/19; NBC, 4.8/13; WB, 2.2/6; ABC, 2/5; UPN, 1.4/4; Fox, 1/3.

In total viewers: CBS, 21.7 million; NBC, 10.9 million; ABC, 5.9 million; WB, 5.2 million; UPN, 3.4 million; Fox, 2.6 million.

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