The BBC One celebrity ballroom dancing contest, which has hovered just below the ten million mark for the last month, averaged a huge 10.35m and a 42.6% share between 6.30pm and 8pm - a series high.
Strictly, which added 400k compared to last week, beat The X Factor by a margin of 2m.
However, the ITV singing contest slightly narrowed the gap between itself and its talent show rival, rallying to 8.31m (33.7%) in its later slot from 8pm. It added 296,000 on ITV1 +1.
The Xtra Factor followed with 647k (3%) on ITV2, while 3.33m (15.5%) stuck with The Jonathan Ross Show on ITV1 (+1: 259k).
Earlier in the evening, Merlin pulled in a consistent 5.45m (21.9%) for BBC One at 8pm for the adventure drama's latest episode, entitled 'The Dark Tower'.
Pointless Celebrities appealed to 4.88m (24.8%) at the early time of 5.45pm, wiping the floor with ITV1's new Robert Webb clip show The Golden Rules of TV, which amused just 1.51m (7.6%).
You've Been Framed followed with just 2.62m (11.5%) at 6.30pm (+1: 182k), before Take Me Out slumped to 2.92m (11.8%) from 7pm (+1: 150k).
Elsewhere, Channel 4's screening of Knight and Day took 1.44m (6.5%) from 9pm (+1: 338k), while 816k (3.7%) watched CSI: Miami on Channel 5.
Overall, BBC One reigned victorious in primetime with 27.6% versus ITV1's 22.6% (+1: 0.9%). BBC Two clinched third place with 5.7%, ahead of Channel 4's 4.3% (+1: 0.7%), and Channel 5's 3% (+1: 0.2%).
BARB ratings data supplied by Attentional