Thursday TV's Big Revelation, Not Counting Izzy's: Losing William Petersen sucks. Not because Laurence Fishburne sucks, but because the mere act of losing Petersen gave CSI super-great numbers last week (24.2 million viewers) that, by comparison, make last night's perfectly good numbers (estimated 17.5 million) look lousy, even if they are, in fact, perfectly good, and the biggest of the night.
Dead Denny Storyline Pays Off: Grey's Anatomy (14.3 million) was up over its season average in viewers, and easily the night's No. 1 show among adults 18-49. Its good fortune rubbed off on Private Practice (9.6 million), which scored its biggest audience of the season.
Maybe There a Big Party Somewhere? The demographically desirable just didn't tune in broadcast TV last night at 8 p.m. In the hour, Fox's returning Bones (8.7 million viewers overall for back-to-back episodes) was the biggest of the bunch, and even its 18-49 rating didn't top what ABC got the night before with a Lost rerun that aired opposite American Idol.
What 30 Rock Needs: More low-energy retirees who don't flip. The Tina Fey sitcom had a relatively OK week (6.4 million), but posted double-digit losses across the demographic board from lead-in The Office (8.7 million)—except among adults over 50.
Etc: The Office and ER (7.7 million) was up from last week; 30 Rock, My Name Is Earl (6.5 million) and Smallville (3.8 million) were down.