The Overnights: ‘The Bachelor’ Pads ABC

This was not a Monday night victory for ABC in the magnitude of soon-to-return Dancing With the Stars. But the ongoing strength of the 8-10 p.m. time period warmer The Bachelor led ABC to overnight Monday victory, with a 7.0 rating/11 share, according to Nielsen Media Research data. Second overall was CBS at a 6.8/10, followed by Fox (6.1/9), NBC (3.9/6) and The CW (1.3/2).

The Bachelor, which concludes for the season on March 14, was above average at a 7.3 rating/11 share from 8-10 p.m., peaking at a 7.9/12 at 9:30 p.m.

Older-skewing Castle followed with a second place 6.1/10 in the overnights for ABC at 10 p.m.

Laugh track-drenched CBS sitcom Mad Love finished third at 8:30 p.m. with a 5.3/8 in the overnights. Comparably, that dipped by 9 percent from its week-ago season opener (5.8/9 on Feb. 14), with retention out of lead-in How I Met Your Mother (No. 3: 6.3/10 at 8 p.m.) of 84 percent. Although this is similar to recent occupant Rules of Engagement, Rules was never what you would call a hit. And nor will Mad Love be.

Also on CBS was a repeat of Two and a Half Men (7.7/11), which still won the 9 p.m. half hour despite airing a nonoriginal, followed by favorite Mike & Molly (7.5/11) and Hawaii Five-O (7.0/12). Given Charlie Sheen’s ongoing troubles, the audience better get used to those repeats. Only 20 original episodes are now expected this season.

Fox crime solver The Chicago Code is now officially similar to former time period occupant Lie to Me, with a third-place 5.3/ 8 in the overnights at 9 p.m. While the retention out of lead-in House (No. 2: 7.0/11 at 8 p.m.) was a decent 76 percent, Fox is in need of breakout hits, and Code looks like nothing more than a time-period filler.

Elsewhere, NBC had another abysmal showing from 8-10 p.m. care of Chuck (3.5/ 5) and The Cape (2.6/ 4), which already had its episode order slashed. But recent older-skewing legal entry Harry’s Law perked up to a still third place 5.8/10 at 10 p.m.