The first Wednesday of December saw CW’s “Arrow” spike to season highs with its crossover storyline with “The Flash,” while Fox’s “Empire” bounced back from its Thanksigivng Eve low of last week to finish fall with a ratings bump. Also of note was continued growth for CBS’ “Code Black,” which was up for a second straight week to match its season high.

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, “Arrow” averaged a 1.3 rating/4 share in adults 18-49 and 3.6 million viewers overall leading off the night for CW, up 18% (0.2) in the demo and about 33% in total viewers from its most recent original of two weeks ago. It was the No. 1 show in its time period in men 18-34 (1.2/5) and second in men 18-49 (1.6/6). These were the show’s top 18-49 and total-viewer tallies since its year-ago crossover with “The Flash” (1.4 in 18-49, 3.9 million).

“Supernatural” also had a strong night (0.9/3 in 18-49, 2.1 million viewers overall), up nearly 30% in both categories from its prior original of two weeks ago. The veteran hit season highs in men 18-34 (1.0/4), men 18-49 (1.1/3) and total viewers.

Fox’s “Empire” (4.4/13 in 18-49, 11.5 million viewers overall) had its top score in four weeks as it wrapped the first half of its season; it shot up 37% (1.2) from last week’s Thanksgiving Eve score (3.2), which has ben easily the show’s lowest score to date. It was last night’s No. 1 program in all categories. Kicking off he night, “Rosewood” (1.4/5 in 18-49, 5.0 million viewers overall) was in line with its recent average.

At CBS, “Survivor” (2.1/7 in 18-49, 9.4 million viewers overall) was about average, bouncing back 0.3 from its season low set last week with a two-hour episode on Thanksgiving Eve. It was followed by “Criminal Minds” (1.5/5 in 18-49, 8.7 million viewers overall), which matched its demo low but picked up some in total viewers, likely due to the absence of crime drama competition from “Law & Order: SVU.”

The Eye has to be pleased by the steady growth for “Code Black” (1.5/5 in 18-49, 8.5 million viewers overall), which has picked up steam in the two weeks when NBC’s timeslot-leading “Chicago PD” was on the bench and matched its series premiere demo rating as its best yet. “Code Black” was the 10 p.m. broadcast leader in most categories, and built on its lead-in from “Criminal Minds” by 16% in adults 18-34 (1.00 vs. 0.86).

ABC had a good start to the night with “The Middle” (2.1/7 in 18-49, 7.8 million viewers overall), which edged out “Survivor” for the 8 p.m. half-hour lead in 18-49, and “The Goldbergs” (2.0/6 in 18-49, 6.5 million viewers overall) was about average at 8:30 p.m., placing second for its slot. “Modern Family” (2.4/7 in 18-49, 7.4 million viewers overall) was off a big 0.3 from its prior season low, and “Black-ish” (1.7/5 in 18-49, 5.5 million viewers overall) was a tenth below its low-water mark; both shows placed second to “Empire” for the hour. The night concluded on a low note once again with “Nashville” (0.9/3 in 18-49, 4.2 million viewers overall); the country music-themed soap will give way to the second season of “American Crime” starting in January.

NBC opened with its annual special “Christmas in Rockefeller Center” (1.5/5 in 18-49, 8.0 million viewers overall), which gave the net its best non-“The Voice” result in Wednesday’s opening hour since last year’s “Rockefeller” (1.9 in 18-49, 9.52 million). It was followed by the network premiere of animated classic “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (1.5/4 in 18-49, 5.6 million viewers overall), which had been airing on ABC for years, and a 90-minute repeat of the special “A Saturday Night Live Christmas” (1.4/5 in 18-49, 4.4 million viewers overall).