By James Hibberd
Updated April 27, 2012 at 03:57 PM EDT
Credit: Dana Edelson/NBC

NBC’s 30 Rock hit a six-week high in the ratings with a live episode, while ABC’s Scandal managed to rival CBS’ usual 10 p.m. victor The Mentalist. Both gains are offset, however, by the fairly low ratings levels we’re talking about for all the shows involved.

Thursday night saw broadcasters airing all-original episodes as we near May sweeps. Here’s how the night breaks down:

Fox won the evening with a steady American Idol (14.4 million viewers, 3.9 adults 18-49 rating) and Touch (6.5 million, 1.9), the latter falling 10 percent to a new low.

CBS was second with Big Bang (12.5 million, 4.0) down 9 percent to a low and Rules of Engagement (8.3 million, 2.5) up 14 percent. Person of Interest (12.5 million, 2.4) dropped 20 percent to low and The Mentalist (11.9 million, 2.1) was down 13 percent to a low.

ABC’s Missing (7 million, 1.3) slipped 7 percent to a low, followed by Grey’s Anatomy (9.3 million, 3.2) and Scandal (7 million, 2.1). The Shonda Rhimes dramas will likely match last week’s ratings after some overrun from Grey’s is removed from Scandal in the national numbers.

NBC’s Community (3.3 million, 1.4) was up 8 percent, 30 Rock (3.5 million, 1.6) rose 7 percent for its live episode. The Office (4.1 million, 2.1) and Parks & Recreation (3.2 million, 1.6) were both down about 5 percent At 10 p.m., Awake (2.2 million, 0.8) fell 11 percent to a new low.

The CW’s Vampire Diaries (2.2 million, 1.0) and Secret Circle (1.2 million, 0.5) were stable.

Episode Recaps

30 Rock

30 Rock

Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, and Tracy Morgan star in the Emmy-winning comedy. You want to go to there.

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