March Madness Leads CBS to Thursday Victory

Friday, March 26, 2010
Prime-Time Metered Market Thursday Ratings:
Ratings Box:
What’s Hot/What’s Not

On the Air This Weekend:
Prime-Time Programming Options 

TV Tidbits:
Notes of Interest
TV Trivia Time:

The Nanny Named Fran

March Madness Leads CBS to Victory
Thursday 3/25/10


CBS    7.2/12
ABC   6.6/11
NBC   4.5/ 7
Fox     3.4/ 5
CW     2.2/ 4

-Percent Change From the Year-Ago Evening (Thursday, March 26, 2009):

CBS: + 1, NBC: – 6, ABC: – 7, CW: – 8, Fox: -65

-Yesterday’s Winners:

2010 NCAA Basketball: Semi-Finals – Day 1 (CBS), Grey’s Anatomy (ABC), The Office (NBC)

-Yesterday’s Losers (excluding repeats):
Community (NBC), Parks and Recreation (NBC)
-Ratings Breakdown:

Ongoing March Madness kept CBS in the Thursday overnight winners circle, with the Regional Semi-Finals in Salt Lake City and Syracuse at an estimated 7.2 rating/11 share for the prime-time (8-11 p.m.) portion. Comparably, this was virtually identical to the 7.1/12 for the Regional Semi-Finals on March 26, 2009. Here is the half-hour breakdown:


2010 NCAA Basketball: Regional Semi-Finals – Day 1

8:00 p.m.: 6.2/11 (#1)
8:30 p.m.: 7.4/14 (#1)
9:00 p.m.: 8.2/13 (#2)
9:30 p.m.: 7.1/11 (#2)
10:00 p.m.: 7.2/12 (#1)
10:30 p.m.: 7.0/12 (#1)

Keep in mind, of course, that results for any live sporting event are always approximate. In the event you missed yesterday’s PI, regularly scheduled 9-11 p.m. CBS occupants CSI and The Mentalist will flip time periods effective next week. 


Second-place ABC opened the evening with on the-fence FlashForward at a second-place 4.8/ 8 in the overnights at 8 p.m. Comparably, this was eight percent below the 5.2/ 8 one week earlier in the 8 p.m. hour (which only translated into a 1.9 rating among adults 18-49). Considering CBS’ normally competing Survivor was absent last night, this is not a positive performance. 


ABC moved into the overnight winner’s circle at 9 p.m. care of veteran Grey’s Anatomy (#1: 8.6/14), followed by spin-off Private Practice at a second-place 6.5/11 at 10 p.m. Comparably, retention for Private Practice out of the second-half of Grey’s Anatomy (8.8/14 at 9:30 p.m.) was a so-so 74 percent.


NBC has a typical Thursday with its combination of Community (#4: 3.8/ 6), Parks and Recreation (#4: 3.4/ 5), which I personally doubt will ever catch on, demo friendly The Office (#3: 5.5/ 8), always soft 30 Rock (#3: 4.3/ 7) and recent entry The Marriage Ref (#3: 4.9/ 8). The Office makes the list of winners, of course, for the double-digit growth out of Parks and Recreation and the ongoing strength (and potential time period dominance) among adults 18-49. The good news for The Marriage Ref, meanwhile, was growth out of 30 Rock of 14 percent. Unfortunately, though, creator Jerry Seinfeld was back on camera. 


Fox populated this final Thursday in March with repeats of Bones (#3: 4.3/ 7) and Fringe (#4: 2.7/ 4). And The CW capped it off with freshman success The Vampire Diaries (#5: 2.5/ 4) and compatible Supernatural (#5: 2.0/ 3), which will both be back next season. If The CW really wants to make an impact, why not move Supernatural to Friday at 9 p.m. out of former lead-in Smallville and find something new out of The Vampire Diaries?

Source: Nielsen Media Research data (R = repeat)

Ratings Box:

-More Dominance for NBC in Late Night:

Based on the Live Plus Same Day ratings for the atypical week of March 15, NBC’s combination of The Tonight Show With Jay Leno and The Late Show with Jimmy Fallon led the late night troops. I refer to the week as atypical because CBS’ The Late Show With David Letterman and The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson (which aired in repeats) were delayed on Thursday and Friday due to March Madness and were excluded from the weekly averages. 

Here are the results by program for the week:
Total Viewers
11:35 p.m. ET

The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (NBC): 4.6 million

The Late Show with David Letterman (CBS): 3.6 (Monday-Wednesday)

Nightline (ABC): 3.3
12:05 a.m. ET
Jimmy Kimmel Live (ABC): 1.4 (repeat)
12:35 a.m. ET
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (NBC): 1.9 million

Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (CBS): 1.5 (repeat, Monday-Wednesday)

1:35 a.m. ET

Late Call with Carson Daly (NBC): 1.1 million (Monday was a repeat)

Adults 18-49
11:35 p.m. ET

The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (NBC): 1.2 rating/5 share

The Late Show with David Letterman (CBS): 0.9/ 4 (Monday-Wednesday)

Nightline (ABC): 0.8/ 3
12:05 a.m. ET
Jimmy Kimmel Live (ABC): 0.4/ 2 (repeat)
12:35 a.m. ET
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (NBC): 0.7/ 4

Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (CBS): 0.5/ 3 (repeat, Monday-Wednesday)

1:35 a.m. ET

Late Call with Carson Daly (NBC): 0.4/ 3 (Monday was a repeat)

Source: Nielsen Media Research data

On the Air This Weekend:
Prime-Time Programming Options


 8:00 p.m. Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution (R)

 9:00 p.m. Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution (time period premiere)

10:00 p.m. 20/20

 8:00 p.m. 2010 NCAA Basketball – Regional Semi-Finals, Day 2


 8:00 p.m. Who Do You Think You Are?

 9:00 p.m. Dateline


 8:00 p.m. House (R)

 9:00 p.m. Kitchen Nightmares


 8:00 p.m. America’s Next Top Model (R)

 9:00 p.m. Fly Girls (R)

 9:30 p.m. High Society (R)

 8:00 p.m. V (R)
 9:00 p.m. V (R)

10:00 p.m. Castle (R)


 8:00 p.m. 2010 NCAA Basketball – Regional Finals – Day 1 (from 4:30 p.m.)

 9:00 p.m. NCIS: Los Angeles (R)

10:00 p.m. 48 Hours Mystery

 8:00 p.m. Parenthood (R)

 9:00 p.m. Law & Order (R)

10:00 p.m. Law & Order: SVU (R)

 8:00 p.m. Cops (original and repeat)

 9:00 p.m. America’s Most Wanted  

Sunday 3/28/10
7:00 p.m. America’s Funniest Home Videos
 8:00 p.m. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (R)
 9:00 p.m. Desperate Housewives (R)

10:00 p.m. Castle (R)


 7:00 p.m. 60 Minutes

 8:00 p.m. The Amazing Race 16

 9:00 p.m. Undercover Boss

10:00 p.m. Cold Case (part one)

 7:00 p.m. Dateline

 8:00 p.m. Minute to Win It

 9:00 p.m. Celebrity Apprentice


 7:00 p.m. ‘Til Death

 7:30 p.m. ‘Til Death

 8:00 p.m. The Simpsons

 8:30 p.m. The Cleveland Show

 9:00 p.m. Family Guy

 9:30 p.m. Sons of Tucson


TV Tidbits:

Notes of Interest


-Showtime Renewals:

Just one episode into their new seasons, Showtime has picked-up half-hours Nurse Jackie and The United States of Tata for a third season, with 12 new episodes each for 2011. Production will begin later this year. 


-MTV Cancels The Hills:

Four year-old docudrama The Hills, which introduced us to the most obnoxious couple in the history of non-scripted programming, Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt, will officially conclude at the end of this season. The final 12 episodes are slated to begin on Tuesday, April 27.


-Victorious on Nickelodeon:

Kids producer extraordinaire Dan Schneider has another hit up his sleeve called Victorious, which debuts on Nickelodeon tomorrow at 9:30 p.m. ET (out of The Kids’ Choice Awards). I refer to it as a hit with a tremendous degree of certainty given the reaction of my seven-year-old daughter Morgan after watching the pilot. Victorious tells the story of a teenage girl (Victoria Justice) who ends up the new student at a high school for the performing arts. With seven shows to-date on Nickelodeon, Dan is the “Jerry Bruckheimer” of the kids programming world!


-Got to Dance on CBS:

CBS has ordered a new reality/competition called Got to Dance, which will feature dancers of any age, group-size or style competing to become the country’s favorite dance act. Based on the hit British show, the panel of judges and scheduled premiere date will be announced at a later time.


-Weeds Heads to TV Guide Channel:

TV Guide Channel has picked-up the exclusive cable rights for Showtime sitcom Weeds, beginning in September. The deal includes all 63 episodes from the first five seasons, plus any future episodes from later seasons.


-Coming Up on Fox:

Masterchef, an upcoming cooking competition on Fox, will premiere on Thursday, July 29 at 9 p.m. ET. Joining busy Chef Gordon Ramsay as one of the three judges will be restaurateur wine maker Joe Bastianich and four-star chef Graham Elliot Bowles. 


-Speaking of Fox:

Apparently we will be seeing some changes on perennial reality/competition So You Think You Can Dance this summer. According to a tweet by series creator Nigel Lythgoe, only one dancer will leave the competition each week, not two. And the partners will change every single week. 


-TVS Announces Livin’ Loud:

The Television Syndication Company (TVS) will debut a new non-scripted series at MIPTV called Livin’ Loud, which will feature four fearless young adults who seek out thrills and adventure in their 1972 Dodge Commander RV. TVS will also introduce several other new programs for worldwide distribution at MIPTV, including do-it-yourself series Ron Hazelton’s Housecalls and music and entertainment magazine series, On the Mike with Mike Sherman. For more information, click on


-Mark Your Calendars:

It has only been a few weeks since seeing everyone’s actress favorite, Sandra Bullock, snag her Oscar. But The 83rd Annual Academy Awards will air live on ABC on Sunday, February 27, 2011. The nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2011 at 8:30 a.m. ET. 

TV Trivia Time:

The Nanny Named Fran


What did Fran Fine do for a living before she was hired by Mr. Sheffield as the caretaker for his three children on sitcom The Nanny?


a)      bartender

b)      cashier

c)      cosmetics salesperson

d)      fashion consultant

e)      waitress


The answer to yesterday’s question…


Which one of the following series featured a character named Maxine?


a)      The Facts of Life

b)      Judging Amy

c)      Living Dolls

d)      Punky Brewster

e)      Room 222


Is:  b) Judging Amy. Multi Emmy winner Tyne Daly played Maxine Gray.

-Current kudos goes to:
Steve Albright, Gerry Bixenspan, Barbara Bloomfield, Jocelyn Brandeis, John Brooker, Jim Colucci, Harold Cooper (2x), Audrey Davis, Reid Davis, Mark Dvorak, John Emmett, John Ferlazzo, George Gardner, Maureen Goldman, Geoffrey Gordon, Carolyn Becker Hayes, Mike Holland, Bob Ingersoll, Cara Jacobs, Kevin Jones, Deb Kainer, Mary Kalnin, Marie LeFevre Karp, Kathryn Kieser, Mary Kinoshita, Mark Krause, Patty Lynch, Jim Moore, Michael Murphy, Aaron Paquette, Mary Politano, Francine Purcell, Gordon Purcell, Lisa Tatum-Roehrig, Colleen Roth, Lindsey Rothman, Mary Ryan, Maxine Shulman, Kristen Signore, Joe Swaney, Ronnie Tallant, Carol Teichman Zohrain Zafar, Ted Zawislak