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Primetime Ratings: 'Idol' Returns with Dominant Numbers for Fox

American Idol returned to primetime last night and promptly took over the number one spot, pulling a whopping 9.7/24 in its second hour of programming and averaging 26.9 million viewers in that hour, giving Fox the easy win for the night.

Fox took the top spot at 8 p.m. with Idol delivering an 8.5/24 and 24.3 million total, more than three times the total audience of second place CBS (8.1 million), which delivered a 2.3/6 for Survivor. ABC was third at 1.9/5 with Scrubs earning a 2.0/6 at 8 and new comedy Better Off Ted delivering a 1.8/5 at 8:30. America’s Next Top Model on the CW finished fourth at 1.4/4, ahead of NBC, whose new reality cooking show Chopping Block earned a 0.9/2.

Idol turned in even higher numbers in the 9 p.m. hour with the highest-rated and most total viewers of the night at 9.7/24 and 26.9 million respectively. In the 9:30 half-hour the show averaged 27.4 million viewers and earned a 10.1/24.  ABC’s Lost was next at 4.0/10. CBS was third at 3.4/8 with Criminal Minds, which was the most-watched non-Idol show of the night with 14 million average viewers. NBC moved up with a 1.4/3 for Life while a re-run of 90210 on the CW brought the network back down to fifth at 0.4/1.

At 10, CBS took the lead with CSI: NY pulling a 3.0/8. NBC climbed to second place at 2.2/6 with Law & Order. Life On Mars on ABC was third at 2.1/6.

For the night Fox averaged a 9.1/24 and 25.6 million total viewers. CBS was second in ratings and viewers at 2.9/8 and 11.6 million respectively.  ABC earned a 2.7/7 followed by NBC at 1.5/4.  The CW finished fifth at 0.9/2.