Thomasgibson_criminalminds_240_002… It turns out that Criminal Minds did not, in fact, draw a bigger audience than Lost last night, as appeared to be the case in the fast nationals this morning.

In the final ratings, with more refined number-crunching on Nielsen’s part, ABC’s show ended up with 16.3 million viewers to 16.2 million for its CBS rival. That’s about how it shook out last week too, with Lost getting 16.89 million and Criminal Minds 16.73 million.

Not sure what the creepy crime drama, which stars Thomas Gibson and Mandy Patinkin, is doing this year — or what Lost isn’t — to make things so close, but I’m guessing CBS is thrilled just to be in shouting distance. On average last season (reruns included), ABC had about a 2.5 million-viewer lead in that timeslot.

And even if Minds eventually overtakes Lost, certain corridors of the Disney empire will still be smiling. Both shows are produced by Touchstone TV.

Posted by:Rick Porter