Fast National ratings for Thursday, March 4, 2010.
A special hour-long episode of "The Office" helped make NBC a surprise demo winner in the competitive 9 p.m. hour, but it was "American Idol" and "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" generating Thursday's biggest audiences.
Meanwhile, in its second airing (and time-slot premiere), "The Marriage Ref" took a big audience plunge, but still won its hour in the 18-49 demo.
Among adults 18-49, FOX won Thursday with a 4.9 rating, beating the 3.6 for CBS and the 3.5 for NBC in the key demographic. ABC's 2.6 rating was fourth, leaving The CW in fifth with a 0.7 rating.
Overall, though, it was CBS averaging an estimated 14.35 million viewers to go with an 8.7 rating/14 share. FOX was second with an 8.0/13 and an average of nearly 13.7 million viewers. ABC's 5.5/9 was good for third, beating the 4.3/7 for NBC. The CW's 1.1/2 trailed.
FOX started the night in first with an 11.1/18 for "American Idol," which drew 19.31 million viewers and a 6.5 demo rating for its results show. CBS was second with "Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains," which bounced back to a 7.2/12 without Olympics competition. ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" repeat was third, beating the 3.0/5 for NBC's "Community" and "Parks and Recreation." The CW's repeat of "The Vampire Diaries" had a 1.1/2 for fifth.
CBS moved into first overall at 9 p.m. with a 9.4/15 for "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation." ABC's new "Grey's Anatomy" was second overall with a 7.7/12 and still beat "CSI" in the key demo. NBC's "The Office," with the birth of Jim and Pam's baby, did a 5.2/8 and won the hour with a 4.7 demo rating. FOX's "Kitchen Nightmares" had a 4.8/8 for fourth. The CW's repeat of "Supernatural" retained most of its lead-in.
"The Mentalist" had a 9.1/16 for CBS in the 10 p.m. hour. ABC's "Private Practice" did a 5.0/9 and was third with a 2.5 demo rating. NBC's "The Marriage Ref" had a 4.6/8 in its time period premiere, winning the hour with a 3.2 demo rating. 
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change.
A long-time member of the TCA Board and a longer-time blogger of "American Idol," Dan Fienberg writes about TV, except for when he writes about movies or sometimes writes about the Red Sox. But never music. He would sound stupid talking about music.