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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Thurs., Nov. 4) -- going mental with The Mentalist

The care and feeding of its stations' late night newscasts long has been a big priority for CBS. And with hit crime dramas at 9 p.m. on each weekday night, D-FW's CBS11 is thriving in the 10 p.m. newscast ratings wars.

Thursday brought a huge assist from CBS' The Mentalist, which amassed 464,022 viewers in the 9 p.m. hour to easily rank as prime-time's most-watched program. CBS11's late night newscast then retained a halfway decent-sized chunk of that audience in whipping runner-up WFAA8 by a score of 304,731 viewers to 235,474.

CBS11 also topped the 10 p.m. field among 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming on most stations. Through the first six weekdays of the 20-day November "sweeps," CBS11 is in a strong position to retain its May sweeps crowns in both ratings measurements. May's twin wins marked the first time the station had claimed both titles.

Elsewhere in prime-time, CBS' CSI: Crime Scene Investigation edged ABC's Grey's Anatomy at 8 p.m. in total viewers. But Grey's and Fox's Fringe led the way among advertiser-coveted 18-to-49-year-olds.

From 7 to 8 p.m., CBS' The Big Bang Theory won the first half-hour in total viewers before the second half-hour of Fox's Bones easily whipped CBS' $#*! My Dad Says. It was the same story with 18-to-49-year-olds.

In Thursday's other local news derby results, NBC5 topped the 6 a.m. field in total viewers while Fox4 had the 25-to-54 gold.

CBS11 ran first at 5 and 6 p.m. in total viewers, with Fox4 doing likewise in the 25-to-54 demographic.