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OCT
4
11 MOS

TV Ratings: 'Scandal' Surges to Series Highs, 'Millers' Debuts Well -- Sean Hayes Less So

UPDATED: The ABC drama tops its "Grey's Anatomy" lead-in, jumping 71 percent from last season's opener, stealing some thunder from Thursday's comedy premieres -- including flop "Welcome to the Family"

Scandal It's Handled Episodic - H 2013
ABC
"Scandal"

With so much of Thursday's attention fixed on three brand-new comedies, the spotlight may have been stolen by ABC's Scandal. The drama returned to the 10 p.m. hour with series highs, averaging a 3.6 rating with adults 18-49 -- a 71 percent jump year-over-year -- and 10.5 million viewers.

The night belonged to CBS, though. After a winning episode of The Big Bang Theory (5.0 adults), The Millers opened to a 3.3 adults rating -- a drop-off from Big Bang in the same half hour last week but steady with Two and a Half Men last fall. The Crazy Ones shed a point (25 percent) from its big premiere with its softer lead-in, bringing in a 2.9 demo rating. Two and a Half Men (2.4 adults) fell half of a point from last week's premiere, while Elementary (2.0 adults) only shed one-tenth. CBS narrowly posted a demo advantage over ABC, averaging a 2.9 rating with adults 18-49 and winning the night with 11.7 million viewers.

PHOTOS: 81 of Fall TV's Biggest Stars

ABC set the tone for Scandal's growth with a strong recap special pulling a 1.6 adults rating at 8 p.m., topping NBC comedies for the hour. Grey's Anatomy (3.0 adults) was down four-tenths of a point from its two-hour premiere. The network took a 2.8 adults rating for the night and 8.5 million viewers.

The X Factor (2.0 adults), proving to be quite steady in its first month back, held even at 8 p.m. with a 2.0 rating among adults 18-49. Glee (1.6 adults) took a dip, shedding 20 percent of last week's premiere score. Fox averaged a 1.8 rating with adults 18-49 and 5.7 million viewers.

ANALYSIS: Who Won Premiere Week?

NBC, which aired football in the Cleveland market, saw a low premiere for Welcome to the Family. Averaging just a 1.2 rating with adults after Parks and Recreation (1.3 adults), it ranks as the network's lowest in-season comedy debut and offered a lackluster lead-in to the premiere of Sean Saves the World (1.6 adults). The Sean Hayes vehicle came in 24 percent shy of The Office's showing in the time slot. The Michael J. Fox Show had good week two retention, down just 14 percent to a 1.9 rating with adults 18-49. Parenthood (1.7 adults) was up a tenth from its premiere score. NBC averaged a 1.6 adults rating and 4.5 million viewers.

On The CW, The Vampire Diaries (1.2 adults) returned down four-tenths of a point, while spinoff The Originals (0.9 adults) lost three-tenths of a point from its lead-in -- and three-tenths of a point from last fall's Beauty and the Beast launch, with saw a counter-programming boost against last year's vice presidential debate. The network brought in a 1.0 adults rating and 2.4 million viewers.

Univision averaged a 1.3 adults rating and 3.5 million viewers, while Telemundo took a 0.4 adults rating and 1.1 million.