CHICAGO (thefutoncritic.com) -- Friday's season premiere of the USA original series "Monk" scored its best ratings to date. The second season bow notched a 4.1 household rating and was seen by 5.4 million viewers. That's a leap of 18% from its debut last season (3.5 household rating on 7/12/02) and 11% from its previous record (3.7 household rating on 7/26/02). Overall, "Monk's" second season premiere was the most watched for a scripted series in basic cable history.
More importantly, "Monk" scored a 2.8 rating in adults 25-54 and a 2.1 rating in adults 18-49, beating all of its broadcast and cable competition save for NBC's "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit." Even its 11:00/10:00c replay did well, earning a respectable 1.7 household rating.
Meanwhile, things were less exciting for Comedy Central's new series "I'm With Busey." Tuesday's premiere scored a modest 0.8 household rating with a viewership of just under 1 million, a slight decrease from its lead-in, a repeat of "South Park." Nevertheless "Busey" managed a 0.7 rating among viewers 18-49, a solid 15% increase from former time slot holder "Crank Yankers'" average for the last six weeks.