Ratings: ‘Reiser’ Bombs as Will Ferrell Boosts ‘The Office’

“Idol” is again the most-watched show

It was a night of big ups and downs for NBC as "The Paul Reiser" had the network's lowest-rated in-season comedy premiere ever, but Will Ferrell's guest appearance made the "The Office" TV's top scripted show of the night, according to preliminary Nielsen numbers.

"American Idol," being "American Idol," was the night's most watched show. Airing at 8 p.m., it had a 6.1 rating/19 share in the 18-49 demo. (Its 21 million total viewers were on par with last season's top 9 results double elimination on April 14, 2010.) "Bones," at 9, had a 3.7/10 — up 16 percent from last week — and 11.9 million total viewers.

Also read: Stephen Tobolowsky: My Heartfelt Thanks to 'Community'

At 8, NBC's "Community" (featuring Stephen Tobolowsky, who wrote about the experience for TheWrap), had a 1.4/5 and 3.5 million total viewers. The 8:30 "Reiser," which replaced the ratings-challenged "Perfect Couples" in the Thursday-night lineup, earned a 1.1/3 — down 48 percent from the Jan. 20 "Couples" premiere — and 3.3 million. At 9, the Ferrellized "Office" scored a 4.7/15 and 7.7 million. "Parks and Recreation" at 9:30 had a 2.6/7 and 5.2 million; "30 Rock" at 10 scored a 2.2/6 and 4.5 million; and "Outsourced" at 10:30 had a 1.7/5 and 3.5 million.

On ABC, "Winter Wipeout" at 8 tied its season low with a 1.9/6 and 6.2 million total viewers. A rerun of "Grey's Anatomy" at 9 had a 1.3/3 and 4.2 million, and a "Private Practice" rerun at 10 had a .8/2 and 2.8 million.

CBS ran all reruns. "Big Bang Theory" at 8 had a 1.8/6 and 7.5 million total viewers; "Rules of Engagement at 8:30 had 1.3/4 and 5.8 million; "CSI" had a 1.4/4 and and 8.1 million; and  "The Mentalist" at 10 had a 1.9/5 and 10.8 million.