CBS hits the 'Mother' lode

Spears sends comedy to ratings high

A guest appearance by Britney Spears on Monday gave CBS' "How I Met Your Mother" its highest rating ever.

"Mother" spiked to a series-high 4.5 preliminary rating among adults 18-49, even as the rest of the CBS comedy lineup fell from last week's record-setting return to original episodes.

The second week of strong "Mother" ratings (10.6 million, 4.5/12) assures the one-time bubble comedy will be renewed for the fall. "Mother" was the fourth-highest-rated show of the evening, and CBS won the night (averaging 12.5 million viewers, 4.4 rating/11 share).

At 10 p.m., "CSI: Miami" was the first major broadcast network drama to return with post-strike original episodes. "Miami" easily won the hour and outperformed its previous season average by 7% (15.8 million, 4.8/12).

CBS' other comedies, however, dropped slightly from their post-strike returns last week. "The Big Bang Theory" was down 6% (8.6 million, 3.4/10), "Two and a Half Men" was the highest-rated show of the night but also fell 6% (14.2 million, 5.1/13), and "The New Adventures of Old Christine" dropped 12% (9.9 million, 3.8/9).

ABC was second with the second week of "Dancing With the Stars" falling 11% and "The Bachelor" dropping a steeper 16% to place last in the 10 p.m. hour, matching its series low amid the increased competition from "Miami."

Fox and NBC tied for third. The Peacock aired "My Dad Is Better Than Your Dad," dropping to a series low and going below the line for a major broadcast network series (7.1 million, 1.2/3). NBC then aired "Deal or No Deal" (7.1 million, 3.0/7) and "Medium" (8.8 million, 3.0/8). Fox had a repeat and "New Amsterdam" (6.3 million, 2.0/5).

The CW had a repeat and "Girlicious" (1.5 million, 0.8/2).