Historic it wasn't. Effective it was.
ABC won Tuesday with the Brooke Burke-crowning Dancing With the Stars finale (20.6 million viewers, per Nielsen estimates) and the popcorn-popping A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (11.1 million).
Overall, Dancing's audience was down about 4 million viewers from last fall's finale when Hélio Castroneves claimed the glitter ball
CBS' NCIS (18.2 million) was the most-watched show located outside of a ballroom. Fox's House (12.5 million) scored the most adults 18-49 of any non-jitterbugging entertainment.
The 9 p.m. hour marked another tug-of-war between Fox's Fringe and CBS' The Mentalist.
Fringe scored more 18-49 year-olds; The Mentalist scored more overall viewers (15.9 million versus Fringe's 8.7 million). Both shows took back seats in those competitions to the first hour of DWTS.
While DWTS has seen bigger finales, it hasn't seen bigger Tuesdays this season. Last night's show was up about 4 million from the show's Tuesday average.
Charlie Brown scored its largest audience since the 1973 holiday favorite began airing on ABC seven years ago, the network said. More key, it was competitive in the ultracompetitive NCIS-House time slot.
On the CW, a night off for 90210 and Privileged meant a night off for viewers—less than 1 million, on average, tuned in the network's offering of the 2003 Mandy Moore movie How to Deal.