CBS’s Late Show with Stephen Colbert hung on to its total-viewer lead in late night, by airing original episodes Monday-Wednesday of last week that had been taped one week earlier. (Thursday and Friday broadcasts were excluded due to NCAA Basketball overruns). NBC’s Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon trailed in total viewers, though the 32K viewers difference was the smallest gap since week of January 30, when just 12K viewers separated the two late-night shows.

Colbert clocked 2.768M viewers last week to Fallon’s 2.763M, bringing Colbert’s tally to eight consecutive weekly total viewer wins; ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live snagged an average of 2.085M viewers.

Meanwhile Tonight continued to dominate in demos last week, with Live + Same Day Nielsen stats. Among 18-49 year olds, late-night’s key demo, Tonight averaged a 0.64/4 to Late Show’s 0.49/3, and JKL’s 0.45/2.

“It’s good to be back on this stage; last week we were off,” Colbert told viewers as he opened Monday’s Late Show this week. “We pretended to have new shows on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, but those were actually taped the week before. It was an illusion, created by an evil genius. So I could go drink rum. And you could watch March Madness. So I hope you enjoyed that.”