The Top Regularly Scheduled Cable News Shows of Nov. 2020

By A.J. Katz Comment

Fox News, the No. 1 cable news network for the Nielsen month of November (Oct. 26-Nov. 27), is home to the top 4 regularly scheduled cable news programs for the month, both in total viewers and among adults 25-54.

In average total viewers, Tucker Carlson Tonight (5.1 million) was followed by Hannity (5 million), The Five, (3.8 million), The Ingraham Angle (3.8 million), The Rachel Maddow Show (3.4 million), Special Report With Bret Baier (3 million), Last Word With Lawrence O’Donnell (2.85 million), The Story With Martha MacCallum (2.8 million), Deadline: White House (2.6 million) and The Beat With Ari Melber (2.6 million).

Here’s a look at how the most-watched shows performed against relevant months.

Network | Show / Total Viewers / vs. Oct. 2020 / # of telecasts

  1. Fox News| Tucker Carlson Tonight / 5,095,000  / -5% / 21
  2. Fox News | Hannity / 4,982,000  / -3% / 18
  3. Fox News | The Five / 3,780,000  / -8% / 22
  4. Fox News | The Ingraham Angle / 3,776,000 / -7% / 20
  5. MSNBC | The Rachel Maddow Show 3,437,000  / -7% / 20
  6. Fox News | Special Report With Bret Baier / 3,038,000  / -12% / 21
  7. MSNBC | The Last Word With Lawrence O’Donnell  / -1% / 19
  8. Fox News| The Story With Martha MacCallum / 2,820,000  / -12% / 20
  9. MSNBC | Deadline: White House / 2,643,000  / +13% / 26
  10. MSNBC | The Beat With Ari Melber / 2,563,000  / +22% / 21

Eight of the 10 most-watched shows of the month were down from their respective October performances, with Fox News’ newscasts Special Report and The Story down the most.

On the other hand, the Nicolle Wallace-hosted Deadline: White House (+13%), and The Beat With Ari Melber (+22%), the latter of which made its first entry into the cable news top 10.

How about year-over-year?

Network | Show / Total Viewers / vs. Nov. 2019 / # of telecasts

  1. Fox News| Tucker Carlson Tonight / 5,095,000  / +49% / 21
  2. Fox News | Hannity / 4,982,000  / +39% / 18
  3. Fox News | The Five / 3,780,000  / +26% / 22
  4. Fox News | The Ingraham Angle / 3,776,000 / +34% / 20
  5. MSNBC | The Rachel Maddow Show 3,437,000  / +8% / 20
  6. Fox News | Special Report With Bret Baier / 3,038,000  / +16% / 21
  7. MSNBC | The Last Word With Lawrence O’Donnell  / +26% / 19
  8. Fox News| The Story With Martha MacCallum / 2,820,000  / +22% / 20
  9. MSNBC | Deadline: White House / 2,643,000  / +33% / 26
  10. MSNBC | The Beat With Ari Melber / 2,563,000  / +38% / 21

However, all 10 of the top 10 were up year-over-year, which one expects when going up against a non-election year.

Tucker Carlson Tonight, which averaged its second-largest monthly audience ever (only October 2020 was bigger), saw the most significant year-over- growth of those top 10 (+49%). Maddow saw the least growth (+8%).

Nov. 2020 Cable news show ranker (Total Viewers)

Next, adults 25-54, the demographic that is preferred by advertisers of news.

In adults 25-54, Hannity and Tucker Carlson Tonight led the way. The duo set a cable news record in the process by exceeding 1 million demo viewers on average for the month. Coming in at No. 3 was The Ingraham Angle (788,000), The Five (688,000), Cuomo Prime Time (671,000), Anderson Cooper 360 (654,000), The Story With Martha MacCallum (654,000), Special Report With Bret Baier (616,000), CNN Right Now (604,000) and The Rachel Maddow Show (602,000).

Fox News had the top 4 regularly scheduled cable news shows of the month in the demo, 6 of the top 10, and 8 of the top 20.

CNN placed 3 in the top 10, including a first-time entry for CNN’s 1 p.m. hour CNN Right Now With Brianna Keilar. CNN also placed 7 in the top 20. MSNBC had 1 in the top 10, but 5 in the top 20.

A more evenly distributed list than usual.

Here’s a look at how the most-watched shows performed against relevant months.

Network | Show / Adults 25-54 / vs. Oct. 2020 / # of telecasts

  1. Fox News| Hannity / 1,046,000 / +7% / 18
  2. Fox News | Tucker Carlson Tonight / 1,018,000 / +1% / 21
  3. Fox News | The Ingraham Angle / 788,000 / +4% / 20
  4. Fox News | The Five / 688,0000 / +2% / 22
  5. CNN | Cuomo Prime Time / 671,000 / +14% / 19
  6. CNN | Anderson Cooper 360 / 654,000 /+20% / 20
  7. Fox News | The Story With Martha MacCallum / 654,000 / +5% / 20
  8. Fox News | Special Report With Bret Baier / 616,000 / +2% / 21
  9. CNN | CNN Right Now With Brianna Keilar / 604,000 / n/a / 10
  10. MSNBC | The Rachel Maddow Show / 602,000 /-3% / 20

Nearly all of the top 10 shows posted demo audience growth from their respective October performances, which makes sense considering you’re more likely to see under-55 Americans watching cable news during an election month than at other points of the year.

One key exception was The Rachel Maddow Show, which was -3% from October in demo viewers. One reason for this might be because she was off the air for a fair chunk of the month.

Here’s a look at how the most-watched shows performed against relevant months.

Network | Show / Adults 25-54 / vs. Nov. ’19 / # of telecasts

  1. Fox News| Hannity / 1,046,000 / +89% / 18
  2. Fox News | Tucker Carlson Tonight / 1,018,000 / +85% / 21
  3. Fox News | The Ingraham Angle / 788,000 / +80% / 20
  4. Fox News | The Five / 688,0000 / +52% / 22
  5. CNN | Cuomo Prime Time / 671,000 / +128% / 19
  6. CNN | Anderson Cooper 360 / 654,000 / +127% / 20
  7. Fox News | The Story With Martha MacCallum / 654,000 / +74% / 20
  8. Fox News | Special Report With Bret Baier / 616,000 / +47% / 21
  9. CNN | CNN Right Now With Brianna Keilar / 604,000 / n/a / 10
  10. MSNBC | The Rachel Maddow Show / 602,000 / +11% / 20

Nov. 2020 cable news ranker (Adults 25-54)

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