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CBS Comedies Get Last Laugh

A couple of season finales (Skating With Celebrities on Fox and The Bachelor on ABC) on Monday were not enough to bring either network to a first-place finish in the Nielsen Fast Affiliate overnight ratings.

Instead, that honor went to CBS, which won with an average 5.0 rating/12 share for the night in the 18-49 demo with its first-run lineup of comedies (The King of Queens, How I Met Your Mother, Two and a Half Men and Courting Alex, which got its best rating in the demo since its Jan. 23 premiere with a 4.7/11) and CSI (the network's highest-rated show and Monday's top program overall with a 6.0/14) at 10.

ABC was second for the night with a 4.7/11 in the demo with Wife Swap at a 3.8/10, and Bachelor, the higher-rated finale, at a 5.1/12.

Fox came in third at a 4.2/10 with Celebrities, which skated away with a less-than-gold-medal 2.8/7 performance, and 24, which did much better with a 5.5/13.

The return of Deal Or No Deal and The Apprentice on NBC were only enough to earn the peacock network fourth place with a 4.1/10. Deal earned a 4.5/12 from 8-9; The Apprentice saw its numbers fall from its lead-in, scoring a 3.9/9.

The WB was fifth for the night with a 1.7/4 for its lineup of 7th Heaven and Related.

And bringing up the rear with a tie at 1.6/4 was UPN with its comedy lineup and Univision with its sizzling soap fare.