"Frasier" left the building for the last time Thursday and landed atop Nielsen's weekly ratings chart.
The series finale of the 11-year-old NBC sitcom drew more than 25 million viewers, its biggest audience since October 2000, making it television's most watched show of the week.
Nevertheless CBS managed to eke out a win during the second complete week of the May sweeps period, averaging 11.8 million viewers, just ahead of NBC's 11.2 million. Fox claimed third place with 9.2 million, followed by ABC at 8.3 million.
Two other shows made less dramatic exits from the airwaves last week. The series finale of ABC's "The Practice," which bid farewell Sunday after seven years on the air, averaged 10.9 million viewers, up about 2 million from its season average.
Nearly 4.4 million viewers tuned in to the final episode of UPN's five-year-old "The Parkers," about a million more than its normal audience.
CBS got a boost last week from two old-timers. "The Dick Van Dyke Show Revisited," which reunited the surviving cast members of the classic comedy show, won its time slot Tuesday with 14.6 million viewers. "The Carol Burnett Show: Let's Bump Up the Lights," featuring another gathering of the variety show stars, garnered a respectable 13.6 million. That's about half the number of viewers who watched her first reunion special in November 2001.
A new version of "Helter Skelter," another blast from the past, about the 1969 Tate/LaBianca murders at the hand of Charles Manson, failed to interest a crowd. The Sunday movie on CBS drew only 9.3 million, losing out to ABC and NBC programming, including "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition," "Super Millionaire" and "Law & Order: Criminal Intent."
The week's 10 most watched programs, in order, were: NBC's "Frasier" and "ER"; Fox's Tuesday "American Idol"; CBS's "CSI"; Fox's Wednesday "American Idol"; CBS's "CSI: Miami" and "Survivor: All-Stars"; NBC's "Frasier" clip show; and CBS's "Without a Trace" and "Everybody Loves Raymond."