The season premiere of ABC’s Dancing with the Stars (5.1/15 in adults 18-49, 22.3 million viewers) was down 20% from the March premiere last year to rank as the show’s lowest-rated spring premiere since Season 2 in 2006. But vs. the fall cycle’s debut, Dancing was flat and easily the top program of the night in 18-49 and total viewers. Buoyed by a Dancing lead-in (and probably some overrun), Castle (3.3/9) at 10 PM was up 18% from its last original Feb. 28, when it followed The Bachelor. ABC easily won the night in 18-49 (4.5/13) and viewers (19.1 million).
At CBS, the first Daylight Saving Time original of How I Met Your Mother (2.9/9) was down from the last fresh episode Feb. 28 for a season low. With a new HIMYM as a lead-in vs. a repeat last week, Mad Love (2.3/7) was up 10% from last week. Following a Two and Half Men (2.6/7) repeat, Mike & Molly (3.0/8) was down 12% from its last original Feb. 28 (also following a Men rerun) for a series low. But that didn’t affect Hawaii Five-0 (2.9/8), which was up 4% from its last original Feb. 21.