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CBS is getting a bigger bang out of its most popular comedy.
The Big Bang Theory set a series record with 17.6 million viewers last week, the Nielsen Co. said Tuesday. The Thursday night comedy, now in its sixth year on the network, was second only to NBC's Sunday night football game in popularity for the week.
The show, about four geeky technology institute workers, an aspiring actress and their friends, is in its third year on CBS' Thursday night schedule. Its reruns are very popular on TBS and appear to be fueling interest in original episodes.
It was a big CBS week in the ratings. Eight out of the top 10 scripted shows were on CBS, with ABC's Modern Family and Castle the only two exceptions.
The broad-brush miniseries Mankind seems to be a rare misfire for the usually hot History network. Its first episode had 2.1 million viewers last week, Nielsen said. The series America: The Story of Us, upon which the new one was modeled, had 5.7 million viewers for its first episode.