Strong performances from comedies like "How I Met Your Mother," "Two and a Half Men" and "The Big Bang Theory" helped to carry CBS past FOX for Monday night ratings wins.
Among adults 18-49, CBS averaged a 4.3 rating, topping the 3.8 rating for FOX in the key demographic. ABC's 2.6 rating was a distant third, with NBC's 1.7 rating taking fourth. The CW was fifth with a 0.9 rating.
Overall, CBS averaged an estimated 13.01 million viewers to go with an 8.0 rating/13 share. FOX stayed second with a 6.4/10 and an estimated 10.83 million viewers. ABC's 6.0/10 was a close third, way ahead of the 3.4/5 for NBC. The CW's 1.2/2 was fifth.
FOX started the night in first with a 7.5/12 for the return of "House," which also won the key demo with a 4.8 rating. CBS was second with "How I Met Your Mother" (6.3/10, with this week's guest star Jennifer Lopez and last week's Carrie Underwood drawing similar audiences) and "Rules of Engagement" (6.1/9). The first hour of ABC's "The Bachelor" wedding was third. NBC's "Chuck" had a 3.8/6 and a 2.3 demo rating, still delivering NBC's best ratings of the night in most measures. The CW's "Life Unexpected" had a 1.3/2 in its 8 p.m. premiere.
CBS moved into first at 9 p.m. with a 10.1/15 for "Two and a Half Men" and "The Big Bang Theory," which also averaged a 5.8 demo rating for the hour. ABC's "Bachelor" special improved to a 6.4/10 for second both overall and in the demo. FOX's "24" got a small bump from its "House" lead-in, but still did only a 5.3/8. NBC's "Trauma" returned to an unimpressive 3.0/5 and a 1.4 demo rating. The CW's "Gossip Girl," also off the air for a while, lost viewers from its lead-in, though it gained in the 18-49 demo.
"CSI: Miami" had a 7.5/13 and a 3.3 demo rating to win the 10 p.m. hour for CBS. ABC's "Castle" had a 5.9/10 for second. NBC's "Law & Order" was down from its 10 p.m. premiere last week and barely improved on its demo lead-in.

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.