Showtime's 'The Big C' draws record premiere

'Weeds' debuts well; 'Kourtney' is Sunday's most-watched

Showtime has managed the unlikely feat of setting a ratings record with a comedy about cancer.

Despite its challenging premise, Monday night's "The Big C" drew the largest audience for the network in eight years for an original series premiere.

"The Big C," which stars Laura Linney as a woman diagnosed with a terminal illness, drew 1.2 million viewers.

"The Big C's" lead-in, "Weeds," premiered to a strong 1.26 million viewers at 10 p.m., up 4% from the Season 5 debut, which drew 1.21 million.

Sunday night's "Kourtney & Khloe Take Miami" finale was the show's most-watched telecast ever. The Season 2 closer drew 3.7 million viewers.

Another cable debut, TruTV's pawn shop reality show "Hardcore Pawn," debuted Monday to 2 million viewers and 1 million in the adult demo -- making it the network's most-watched series premiere.

On TLC, pitting Senior vs. Junior is working out pretty well.

The seventh-season opener of "American Chopper" on Thursday drew 2.8 million viewers, the show's largest audience since it moved to TLC four years ago.

The latest version of the veteran hit features longtime feuding "American Chopper" partners Paul Teutul and Paul Teutul Jr. now working in rival motorcycle shops.

The Season 4 premiere of TLC's "LA Ink" on Wednesday also posted gains, drawing 2 million viewers, up from its previous debuts.