The premiere of the CW's "The Secret Circle" held most of the audience for the returning "Vampire Diaries," the network's biggest hit, marking a promising start for the drama about teenage witches, according to preliminary numbers.
CW was the third highest-rated network of Thursday night in the 18-49 demographic — an unusually good showing — behind ABC and CBS, which tied for first. It helped that only one other original show aired (ABC's "Wipeout" finale), but that wasn't the whole reason for the strong finish. Networks often top CW originals by running only reruns, as CBS did Thursday.
At 8, "The Vampire Diaries" earned a 1.4/4 in the demo and 3 million total viewers — unremarkable for the more established networks, but good for the CW. At 8:30, "The Secret Circle" earned a 1.3/4 and 3 million.
ABC's "Wipeout," meanwhile, earned a 2.2/6 and 6.7 million total viewers. Its ratings were down 19 percent from last summer’s 2-hour finale block on Sept. 14, 2010.
The night's most watched show was a "Big Bang Theory" rerun, which earned a 2.6/8 and 8.7 million total viewers.