CBS's "Big Bang Theory" won top honors Thursday night, while "American Idol" dipped slightly but along with a surging "Glee," it still propelled Fox to a ratings win for the night. Meanwhile, NBC's struggling cult favorite "Community" enjoyed a ratings boost, according to preliminary numbers.
Fox took first place in ratings with a 3.1 rating/9 share in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic and second place in total viewers with 10.6 million.
A 90-minute "American Idol" results show at 8 p.m. that named the top 10 finalists was down 5 percent from last week in the demo with a 3.5/10 but inched up 6 percent in total viewers for 12.9 million.
The 500th Song episode of "Glee" at 9:30 gave a boost to the series, which returned after three weeks with a 47 percent jump in the demo for a 2.5/7. The hour- long "Glee" episode drew 7 million total viewers.
CBS came in second in ratings but first in total viewers with a 3.0/9 and 12.9 million, scoring a couple of big victories along the way. "The Big Bang Theory" grabbed a decisive first place in ratings with a 5.4/16 and was the night's most-watched program with 17.4 million total viewers.
"Two and a Half Men" at 8:30 beat out "American Idol" for the first time ever, posting a 3.9/11 and drawing 13.6 million total viewers. "Person of Interest" at 9 inched down 3 percent from its last original airing two weeks ago to tie a season low of 2.8/8 with 14.4 million total viewers. An "Elementary" repeat followed.
Univision took third place in ratings and total viewers with a 1.8/5 and 4.3 million.
ABC, which aired repeats throughout the night, tied NBC for fourth in ratings and took fourth place outright in total viewers with a 1.1/3 and 3.9 million.
NBC, in fifth place in total viewers with 3 million, mostly aired repeats, with the exception of "Community," which jumped 25 percent for a 1.5/5 and drew 3.4 million total viewers, and "1600 Penn" at 9:30, which was even with last week to tie a series low of 0.9/2 and drew 2.2 million total viewers.