The Glee phenomenon isn't hype. Grey's Anatomy isn't what it used to be. And Vampire Diaries is, well, it's OK. (Unlike House?)
A ratings rundown of where we are—or, rather, where the TV shows are—one month into the fall season:
The big winners:
1. Glee, which is all anybody can talk about, and for good reason: It's up a whopping 5.2 million viewers this fall versus last fall. (Fall average: 13.4 million.)
3. CBS, which didn't lose much by swapping Hawaii Five-0 for CSI: Miami on Monday nights, and gained a lot (as in some 2.5 million viewers) by subbing CSI: Miami for Cold Case on Sunday nights.
The network's Big Bang Theory gamble has paid off, too: Out on its own on Thursday nights, the comedy's never been bigger. (Fall average: 14.2 million.)
The big losers:
1. House, which must have one of those mystery illnesses the docs at Princeton-Plainsboro are always dealing with because we can't figure out why or how this one is down a shocking 5.4 million. (Fall average: 11.6 million.)
2. Grey's Anatomy, which is glad House's nosedive makes its nosedive—it's down nearly 3 million—look like a mere blip. (Fall average: 14.5 million.)
3. NBC, which has done worse on two out of five weeknights at 10 p.m. than Jay Leno did. (We're looking at you, Outlaw and The Apprentice.) Truth be told, Law & Order: Los Angeles (fall average: 9.2 million) is the only 10 p.m. series that's currently outdrawing Leno on its corresponding night, but we're giving Chase (6.9 million) and Parenthood (6.8 million) passes because Leno's numbers were skewed by his outsized premiere week.
But wait there's more: Last week, the once-dominant Tonight Show outrated David Letterman's Late Show only twice. (Nightline outrated both shows all but once.) And that's where you end up when you mess with Leno, Conan O'Brien and success.
The rest (well, some of the rest):
1. The Office, which, for a show primed for a very-special season, is merely treading water . (Fall average: 8.5 million, down a touch.)
2. Two and a Half Men, which is as resilient as Charlie Sheen's career. (Fall average: 15.1 million, up slightly from last fall.)
3. Brothers & Sisters, which keeps doing what it does. (Fall average: 9.9 million, about even with last fall.) Ditto for America's Next Top Model (fall average: 3.4 million) and 90210 (fall average: 2.2 million).
4. Vampire Diares , which isn't as hot as it was last fall, but is still hotter (and bigger) than anything else on the CW. (Fall average: 3.6 million, down 20 percent from last fall.)
OK, enough with the big picture…