Ratings: Undercover Boss Gives CBS a Raise, Whitney Sings for 20/20, Nikita Up, Fringe Flat

CBS’ Friday scheduling shuffle paid some dividends in its first week, with Undercover Boss (10.7 million total viewers, 2.4 demo rating) improving on A Gifted Man‘s most recent performance as the lead-off hitter by 22 and 85 percent.

The Boss also gave CBS its most-watched and highest-rated 8 o’clock hour in almost three years, since Ghost Whisperer circa March 2009.

Come 9 pm, A Gifted Man did 9.5 mil and a 1.5, up 8 and 15 percent versus its last 8 pm outing.

However, it could/should be noted that Boss was down 20 percent when compared to its last Sunday broadcast, and Gifted Man was off 10 percent versus CSI: NY‘s most recent tally. Plus, with a slightly weaker lead-in — and opposite an amplified 20/20 special on Whitney Houston — Blue Bloods (10.6 mil/1.6) dipped 10 percent.

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Now speaking of 20/20, its two-hour Whitney Houston retrospective drew 7.86 million total viewers and a 2.0 demo rating, up some 50 percent week-to-week and leading ABC to its most-watched Friday in more than two years.

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A few other notes:

* Among genre-TV fare, Nikita (1.6 mil/0.6) saw gains of 10 and 20 percent, Supernatural (1.7 mil/0.7) was down 10 percent in audience and a tenth in the demo, and Fringe (2.99 mil/1.1) was flat.

* NBC’s broadcast of the NAACP Image Awards averaged 2.96 million viewers and a 0.8 demo rating, placing fourth in both hours.

What were you watching live or live-ish this Friday night?