Now that Fox (NYSE:FOX) is done hogging the Nielsens with baseball, it's time to see where the networks stand when it comes to original programming. And if it's Thursday, it must be Friends orSurvivor, E.R.,CSI, or your acronym of choice.

This is the day when battles run fierce. Last week, four of the five highest-rated non-sports shows aired on Thursday. With Survivor fans cheering on Rupert, and CSI topping the World Series, Viacom's (NYSE:VIA) CBS looks to be sitting pretty as the fall season glides into the holidays.

For General Electric (NYSE:GE), the pressure is on NBC. This is the final season for Friends, leaving the network struggling to find a replacement. What's worse, the hour and a half of programming wedged between the E.R. and Friends bookends should have been a lay-up, yet the next highest rated show for the network clocked in at a disappointing 19th for the week.

Disney's (NYSE:DIS) ABC would be able to smell blood if it was closer to the pack, but its lineup is still a work-in-progress. Beyond Monday Night Football and the latest incarnation of The Bachelor, ABC is absent from the Nielsen 20. It's strange but true. ABC actually was the top-rated network just two years ago, until it milked the Who Wants to Be a Millionaire franchise dry without a roster of alternatives.

Advertisers flock to where the viewers are, so there's plenty at stake. And since it's Thursday, we know exactly where they'll be. Right in front of the TV, that's where.