3 January 2014 9:25 AM, PST | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Audiences flocked to the year’s first new episode of CBS comedy “The Big Bang Theory” on Thursday but rejected ABC’s Cold War-set limited series “The Assets,” which premiered with a thud. NBC, meanwhile, brought back “Community” to smallish numbers and the net’s first-year comedies on the night performed even worse.

CBS dominated its rivals in both adults 18-49 and 25-54, and every show was up from its most recent original, though its lineup as a whole dropped off from the first Thursday of 2013 — perhaps due to the fact that viewers are unaccustomed to getting original episodes of shows so early in the New Year. There was also a very attractive college football bowl game on Espn, as the Alabama-Oklahoma matchup in the Sugar Bowl was expected to win the night; it did a 9.3 overnight household rating, which was up a big 45% over last year’s 6.4 for Louisville-Florida. »

- Rick Kissell

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