How I Met Your Mother Turbocharges CBS’ Lineup

Origin story helps boost Monday night

Episode No. 200 of How I Met Your Mother powered CBS’ entire Monday night lineup, as the nine-seasons-in-the-making origin story helped deliver the comedy’s highest ratings in a year.

According to Nielsen live-plus-same-day data, How Your Mother Met Me averaged 10.8 million viewers and a season-high 3.8 in the adults 18-49 demo. The overall deliveries were the HIMYM’s most robust since the Feb. 4, 2013 episode averaged 10.3 million viewers and a 4.0 rating.

Last night’s episode revealed the Mother’s catastrophic backstory and featured Cristin Milioti’s ukulele-accompanied version of “La Vie en Rose.” HIMYM will be shuttered for good on March 31, when CBS airs a special two-part series finale. 

After getting off to a fast start at 8 p.m., CBS kept pouring it on, as 2 Broke Girls notched a season-high 10.1 million viewers and a 3.0 rating and Mike & Molly scared up 10.8 million viewers and a 2.6 in the demo.

At 9:30 p.m., freshman sitcom Mom served up its biggest audience since premiering on Sept. 23, averaging 9.58 million viewers. The episode’s 2.4 rating was just one-tenth of a ratings point shy of the high notch in the series opener.

Even the beleaguered 10 o’clock drama Intelligence got a boost, drawing 6.84 million viewers and a 1.5 in the demo, up 36 percent from last week’s 1.1 rating. (Intelligence also faced softer competition on the hour, as ABC countered with an encore presentation of Castle (1.4).

Meanwhile, NBC’s The Blacklist drew 10.2 million viewers and a 2.5 in the dollar demo, marking an improvement of 9 percent versus last week’s 2.3. Last night’s installment is the last to air without leading out of The Voice; both shows return from hiatus on Feb. 24, the day after NBC wraps its coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

The only network to really take it on the chin Monday night was Fox, which posted disappointing numbers with the time slot premiere of The Following. After drawing a very promising 11.2 million viewers and a 4.4 in the demo after the NFC Championship Game, the Kevin Bacon vehicle plummeted to series-low 6.02 million viewers and a 2.0 rating.

Season 1 of The Following averaged 7.95 million viewers and a 2.6 rating leading out of Bones. While it’s likely The Following will improve somewhat upon the return of regular 8 p.m. occupant Almost Human—last night’s installment followed a repeat of the Jan. 19 season premiere (1.1)—this was a rough outing for last season’s biggest new hit.

Through its first eight episodes, Almost Human is averaging 6.57 million viewers and a 2.0 rating.

Season to date, NBC is leading the pack with an average 2.9 rating, flat versus the year-ago period. CBS is in second place with a 2.6 (down 7 percent), Fox is in the hunt with a 2.5 (flat) and ABC is down 9 percent with a 2.1.