Premiere Glee episode 'The Purple Piano Project' brought in 8.9m (5.4) in the 8pm hour, after which New Girl launched with 10.1m (4.7).
Surprisingly CBS drama NCIS beat Glee in the demos, commanding an audience of 19.6m (4.2), but that did not stop Fox from taking an overall primetime lead in the demos.
Taking top honours with total viewers, NCIS: Los Angeles kicked off with 16.7m (3.6) and mystery series Unforgettable opened with a strong 14m (2.9).
The Biggest Loser returned to NBC with a fairly modest 6.1m (2.3) from 8pm, before Parenthood slipped to 5.3m (2.1) in the 10pm hour.
Elsewhere, 1.6m (0.7) watched 90210 on The CW at 8pm, and Ringer fell to 2m (0.9) an hour later.