vp debate ratings oct 11 TV ratings: 'Beauty and the Beast' opens well opposite vice presidential debateFast National ratings for Thursday, Oct. 11, 2012

The debate between vice presidential nominees Joe Biden and Paul Ryan didn’t score as big an audience as last week’s first presidential debate, but it still drew a solid audience on all of the big four networks Thursday night.

The CW, meanwhile, got good numbers from the season premiere of “The Vampire Diaries” and the debut of the critically reviled “Beauty and the Beast,” which held onto most of its lead-in. The network’s numbers are somewhat inflated because its Pittsburgh affiliate carried an NFL game, but it’s still likely to be solid in the final nationals.

“The Big Bang Theory” led the pre-debate hour by a wide margin, while ABC’s “Last Resort” took a bit of a hit in its third week.

CBS led the night with 9.35 million viewers and a 6.0 rating/9 share in households. ABC (6.9 million, 4.4/7) edged FOX (6.8 million, 4.1/6) for second place. NBC drew 5.7 million viewers and a 3.7/6 to take fourth. The CW came in with 3.3 million viewers and a 2.0/3.

The adults 18-49 title also went to CBS, which scored a 2.7 rating in the demographic. FOX came in second with a 2.4. NBC finished third with a 1.9, followed by ABC, 1.7, and The CW, 1.4.

]]>8 p.m. CBS: “The Big Bang Theory” (13.8 million viewers, 8.8/14 households)/”Two and a Half Men” (11.2 million, 7.2/11)
FOX: “The X Factor” (8.25 million, 5.0/8)
ABC: “Last Resort” (6.9 million, 4.4/7)
NBC: “30 Rock” (3.8 million, 2.5/4)/”Up All Night” (3.5 million, 2.3/3)
The CW: “The Vampire Diaries” season premiere (3.5 million, 2.1/3) 18-49 leader: “The Big Bang Theory” (4.2) 9 p.m. CBS: Vice presidential debate (8.3 million, 5.3/8)
ABC: Vice presidential debate (7.5 million, 4.7/7)
NBC: Vice presidential debate (7.1 million, 4.4/6)
FOX: Vice presidential debate (5.35 million, 3.2/5)
The CW: “Beauty and the Beast” series premiere (3.2 million, 2.0/3) 18-49 leader: CBS and NBC tied at 2.2 10 p.m. CBS: Vice presidential debate (8.45 million, 5.4/8)/Debate analysis (6.1 million, 4.0/6)
NBC: Vice presidential debate (7 million, 4.4/7)/Debate analysis (5.8 million, 3.8/6)
ABC: Vice presidential debate (7.2 million, 4.6/7)/Debate analysis (5.4 million, 3.7/6) 18-49 leader: NBC (2.1) Ratings information includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are preliminary and subject to change. Source: The Nielsen Company. More ratings at Zap2it: Daily, weekly and cable