TV Ratings: Strong 'Scandal' and 'Big Bang' Top Thursday as 'Idol' Hits New Low

Thursday's heaviest hitters win the night, CBS debuts its tweaked lineup and the Fox competition joins "Community," "Parks & Rec," Reign" and "Rake" in dipping low.
ABC/Eric McCandless

It's good to be The Big Bang Theory. Though the CBS comedy was off three-tenths of a point in its return to originals, the series' 4.9 rating among adults 18-49 put everything else on Thursday night to shame. (NBC is no doubt hoping star Jim Parsons might bring some of that ratings magic to Saturday Night Live, which he hosts this weekend.)

The Millers (2.8 adults), up two-tenths but still shedding a lot of its lead-in, moved into the tweaked 9 p.m. hour -- with both Two and a Half Men (2.5 adults) and The Crazy Ones (1.9 adults) reaping the benefits of their time-slot switch. Men jumped an impressive six-tenths of a point, while The Crazy Ones only improved by two-tenths. Elementary (1.6 adults), dipping two-tenths of a point in the face of ABC's Scandal, wrapped the night.

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CBS posted wins in the key demo (2.5 adults) and total viewers (10.5 million).

Gearing up for the Academy Awards, ABC aired Countdown to the Oscars (1.0 adults) -- nothing huge, but an improvement from The Taste's recent showings in the same hour. Grey's Anatomy (3.0 adults) returned up three-tenths of a point, and Scandal (3.3 adults) improved by a tenth to stand as the night's second-highest-rated series and its biggest drama. ABC was just behind CBS in the demo with a 2.4 rating and also averaged 7.8 million viewers.

Fox's American Idol (2.3 adults) was at a series low, dropping a tenth of a point from last week's Thursday outing. Rake (0.8 adults) was also at a low -- down two tenths. Fox averaged a 1.5 rating with adults 18-49 and 6.6 million viewers.

Comedies struggled on NBC, with Community (1.0 adults) and Parks and Recreation (1.0 adults) tying series lows -- down a respective one- and three-tenths of a point. The Thursday debut of Hollywood Game Night (1.2 adults) improved the 9 p.m. hour that has been occupied by Sean Saves the World and The Michael J. Fox Show. Still, the game show was off three-tenths of a point from its previous original. Parenthood (1.1 adults) fell two-tenths to a  series low. NBC pulled a 1.1 rating with adults 18-49 and 3.2 million viewers.

On The CW, The Vampire Diaries (0.9 adults) held even, while Reign (0.5 adults) dropped a tenth for a low. The network registered a 0.7 demo rating and 1.6 million viewers.