'CSI'-'Trace' crossover tops in viewers, demo


NEW YORK -- There's no investigation needed here: The "CSI"-"Without a Trace" crossover worked wonders for CBS on Thursday.

The two-hour tandem delivered a primetime win not only in viewers but also the adults 18-49 demographic, according to preliminary estimates released Friday by Nielsen Media Research. "CSI" (21.9 million, 6.4 rating/15 share in adults 18-49) beat ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" (19.3 million, 7.9/18) in viewership though not the demo head-to-head. "Without a Trace," which carried on the story line at 10 p.m., averaged 21.4 million viewers and a 6.3/17 in the demo.

It was the largest audience for both shows since their premieres and combined along with "Survivor: China" for the largest audience on CBS for a Thursday night since May 2006.

"Survivor: China" (14.9 million, 4.8/13) was about even week-to-week in the demo, as was ABC's "Ugly Betty" (10.9 million, 3.5/9) and Fox's "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?" (8.8 million, 2.6/7). "My Name Is Earl" (7.7 million, 3.3/9) had its second-highest adults 18-49 rating so far this season, while a green-themed "30 Rock" (6.6 million, 3.1/8) tied its demo rating record so far this season.

Beyond "CSI" and "Grey's Anatomy," NBC's "The Office" (8.3 million, 4.3/10) was down slightly from last week, while "Scrubs" (6.4 million, 3.2/7) was down half a rating point compared with last week in adults 18-49.

"Trace" won by a walk at 10 p.m., while NBC's "ER" (8.4 million, 3.5/9) was down from last week and ABC's "Big Shots" (8.6 million, 3.6/10) was up.

CBS (19.4 million, 5.8/15) won both key measures in primetime followed by ABC (12.9 million, 5.0/13); NBC (7.6 million, 3.5/9); Fox (7.6 million, 2.4/6) and the CW (3.8 million, 1.5/4).