ABC's 'Better Off Ted' off to good start

ABC’s new laffer “Better Off Ted” got off to an OK start Wednesday in tandem with “Scrubs” in the 8 p.m. hour.

“Ted,” a high-concept laffer starring Jay Harrington and Portia de Rossi, bowed at 8:30 p.m. to a 2.1 rating/6 share in the adults 18-49 demo and 5.5 million viewers, according Nielsen.

It held virtually all of its demo lead-in from “Scrubs” (2.2/7, 5.6 mil) and came within a hair of CBS’ laffer “Gary Unmarried” (2.2/6, 7.4 mil) for No. 2 in the timeslot behind Fox drama “Lie to Me” (3.1/10, 10.3 mil).

The second outing of NBC’s “The Chopping Block” (1.2/4, 3.4 mil) didn’t impress, trailing CW’s “America’s Next Top Model” (1.7/5, 3.8 mil) to rank fourth at 8 p.m.

Fox, of course, dominated the night overall with the 9 p.m. installment of “American Idol,” which rang up an 8.7/21 in the key demo and 23.7 million viewers. ABC’s “Lost” put up a respectable 4.3/10 and 9.4 million viewers against the heat of “Idol.” CBS’ “Criminal Minds” (3.3/8, 13.7 mil) was competitive in the hour in viewers and ranked as the second most-watched program of the night.

CBS easily won the 10 p.m. battle, with “CSI: NY” (3.3/9, 12.8 mil) dominating ABC’s “Life on Mars” (1.8/5, 5 mil) and NBC’s “Law and Order” (2.1/6, 7.1 mil). But for the night it was Fox all the way with an average of 5.9/16 in the demo and 17.1 million viewers. CBS nosed past ABC to rank a distant No. 2 in 18-49 (CBS’ 2.9/8 to ABC’s 2.8/8).

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