The Programming Insider: ABC’s GMA Narrows the Gap

Cuts Today’s lead to only 580,000 viewers

In Today’s Issue:

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: George’s Mama

Note: The metered market results for Thursday, April 28 are currently delayed by Nielsen.  But don’t forget to visit at approximately 12 p.m. ET/PT for the fast affiliate ratings.


RATINGS BOX: What’s Hot/What’s Not

Three Year High for The Real World:

Veteran The Real World on MTV, which debuted in 1992, rose to its most-watched telecast in three years.  The Wednesday, April 27 edition averaged 2.5 million viewers, with a first-place finish in the 10 p.m. hour in all of television among target persons 12-34.

Good Morning America Narrows the Gap:

NBC granddaddy The Today Show remains the top-rated morning news franchise.  But based on the live plus same day ratings for the week of April 18, ABC’s competing Good Morning America built year-to-year by nine percent in total viewers (4.81 million), decreasing Today’s lead to only 580,000 viewers.  Compared to the year-ago week, Today increased by one percent, while CBS cellar-dweller The Early Show (2.37 million) dropped by three percent.  Today’s advantage among key adults 25-54 this week was 36 percent over GMA (1.9 vs. 1.4 rating) and a whopping 100 percent over CBS (0.7/ 5).

Here are the overall results for the week of April 18:

Total Viewers:

NBC: 5.39 million, ABC: 4.81, CBS: 2.37

Adults 25-54:

NBC: 1.9 rating/14 share, ABC: 1.4/10, CBS: 0.7/ 5

Source: Nielsen Media Research data

Final Wednesday Nationals:

American Idol, of course, lifted Fox to a first-place finish on Wednesday, with almost twice as many total viewers than second-place CBS and more than double the adult 18-49 demo rating.  But week four of Fox sitcom Breaking In at 9:30 p.m. continues to lose about two-thirds of the Idol lead-in, with 7.01 million viewers and a 2.4 rating/6 share among adults 18-49 (out of 22.32 million viewers and a 7.1/20 in the demo for American Idol from 8-9:30 p.m.).  Sitcom Happy Endings on ABC at 10 p.m. was weaker than Breaking In, with 5.17 million viewers and a 2.1/ 5 in the demo.  But the retention out of Cougar Town (Viewers: 5.62 million; A18-49: 2.1/ 5 at 9:30 p.m.) was solid, which could ultimately warrant a second-season renewal.  A repeat of the two-hour series-premiere of The Voice on NBC, meanwhile, was on the map with 6.15 million viewers and a 2.2/ 6 among adults 18-49 from 9-11 p.m.

Here are the overall results for Wednesday, April 27

Total Viewers:

Fox: 18.49 million, CBS: 9.30, NBC: 5.82, ABC: 5.12, CW: 1.77

Adults 18-49:

Fox: 5.9 rating/16 share, CBS: 2.3/ 6, NBC: 1.9/ 5, ABC: 1.8/ 5, CW: 0.8/ 2

Source: Nielsen Media Research data

ON THE AIR THIS WEEKEND: Prime-Time Programming Options

Friday 4/29/11


8:00 p.m. Shark Tank

9:00 p.m. 20/20 – A Modern Fairytale


8:00 p.m. The Royal Wedding: Modern Majesty

9:00 p.m. CSI: NY

10:00 p.m. Blue Bloods


8:00 p.m. Friday Night Lights

9:00 p.m.  Dateline (two hours)


8:00 p.m. Kitchen Nightmares

9:00 p.m. Fringe


8:00 p.m. Smallville

9:00 p.m. Supernatural

Saturday 4/30/11


8:00 p.m. Movie: Batman Begins (R)


8:00 p.m. Fight Camp 360 – Pacquiao vs. Mosley

9:00 p.m. Criminal Minds (R)

10:00 p.m. 48 Hours


8:00 p.m. Chase

9:00 p.m. Law & Order: Los Angeles (R)

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


8:00 p.m. NASCAR

Sunday 5/01/11


7:00 p.m. America’s Funniest Home Videos

8:00 p.m. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition

9:00 p.m. Desperate Housewives

10:00 p.m. Brothers & Sisters


7:00 p.m. 60 Minutes 

8:00 p.m. The Amazing Race

9:00 p.m. Undercover Boss (season finale)

10:00 p.m. CSI: Miami


7:00 p.m. Dateline 

8:00 p.m. America’s Next Great Restaurant (series finale)

9:00 p.m. Celebrity Apprentice


7:00 p.m. Family Guy (R, one hour)

8:00 p.m. The Simpsons

8:30 p.m. The Cleveland Show (hurricane theme)

9:00 p.m. Family Guy (hurricane theme)

9:30 p.m. American Dad (hurricane theme)


TV TIDBITS: Notes of Interest

Meredith Vieira to Exit The Today Show:

There is no official confirmation yet from NBC, but Today Show co-anchor Meredith Vieira, who joined the morning news franchise in 2006, is expected to depart in June.  Today Show newsreader Ann Curry will be promoted to co-host, while correspondent Natalie Morales will take Curry’s place as newsreader.

Two Animated Series Join The Hub Line-Up:

Cable network The Hub, a destination for kids and families, will add two classic animated series to its line-up: Jem and the Holograms, which original aired in the late 1980s, and Conan the Adventurer.  Jem and the Holograms will join the weekday schedule beginning Tuesday, May 31 at 7 p.m. ET/PT (with encore telecasts throughout the day) and on Saturdays at 10 a.m. ET/PT.  Conan the Adventurer will head to The Hub this summer.

Ice-T Heads to E!:

Just when you wondered who would be next to helm his (or her) own non-scripted docudrama comes word that rapper and actor Ice-T and his wife Coco will be the subject of Ice Loves Coco on E!  The home of the Kardashian clan has ordered eight half-hour installments of this look at life in the Ice-T household.  Ice Loves Coco debuts on Sunday, June 12 at 10:30 p.m. ET.

Mark Pedowitz Named President of The CW:

CBS Corporation and Warner Bros. Entertainment today announced that Mark Pedowitz has been named President, The CW Television Network.  In his new capacity, the veteran network, television studio executive and producer will oversee all aspects of The CW, including programming, sales, marketing, distribution, finance, research and publicity.  He will assume his new duties this month in place of Dawn Ostoff, who is leaving the network to relocate to New York.  Pedowitz, who spent 19 years at Disney-ABC, including serving as president of ABC Studios from 2004-09, oversaw such hit series as Lost, Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, Ugly Betty, Scrubs, Army Wives, Ghost Whisperer and Criminal Minds.

Dawn Ostroff will assist in the transition through the current broadcast season, ending in May.


TV TRIVIA TIME: George’s Mama

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