Last December, when NBC made the surprise announcement that Jay Leno would be anchoring their 10 p.m. lineup this fall, CBS CEO Les “Moonvest” Moonves immediately circled the date September 21, 2009, on his calendar. Why September 21? Well, that was the date when his Monday-night workhorse, CSI: Miami, would make its season-eight premiere, a premiere that he famously predicted would “beat Jay by a lot.” This prediction was reiterated by a Viacom’s undead overlord, Sumner Redstone, who told reporters this spring that “CSI will beat the hell out of [Leno].” Now that the ratings for last night are in, there’s only one question left to ask: Will Moonvest and Redstone be dining on crow tonight?
Well, if the two decide to get together tonight and order crow of their own volition, we suppose that would be their prerogative. However, their prediction that David Caruso and his omnipresent sunglasses would trounce the Chin came true last night: CSI: Miami drew 13.7 million viewers last night, while only 5.7 million people tuned in to see Jay Leno attempt to humiliate Jennifer Garner in front of a nationally televised audience. We’re not entirely sure what Moonvest was envisioning when he said that his network would win that time slot by “a lot,” but we’re guessing that having 8 million more people tune into CBS than NBC last night is a pretty good start.