Ratings: Office Repeats Can't Keep Idol Down

NBC’s decision to program the first Thursday after February sweeps with back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back repeats of The Office nearly paid off.

Averaging 3 million total viewers and a 1-point-something rating, the NBC sitcom’s first four reruns worked valiantly to fend off American Idol‘s results show. TV’s most watched program, however, ultimately edged out the Offices (Offeece?) by an 810 percent margin, drawing nearly 25 million total viewers and an 8.1 rating in the coveted 18-49, rerun-averse demographic.

That marks a week-to-week gain of some 14 percent for Idol, which in its 10th season has retained an impressive chunk of its audience versus a year ago. It also gave Fox the best-rated and most-watched Thursday lineup for any network in almost four years.

But, you ask, how did Rules Of Engagement, broadcast TV’s only original scripted program, perform? Leading out of a Big Bang encore, it drew 8.3 million total viewers (down 13 percent week-to-week) and dropped 18 percent to a series-low 2.3 rating.

What were you tuned into this Thursday? Idol, Idol, or an Office repeat?