CBS Saturday Morning Tops NBC’s Saturday Today for First Time Ever

By Mark Mwachiro 

CBS Mornings may trail Good Morning America and Today in the weekday ratings, but its Saturday iteration beat one of its counterparts this past week.

On Saturday, Nov. 5, CBS Saturday Morning beat NBC’s Saturday Today for the first time ever in total viewers and in the A25-54 demo.

SATMO (as the show is known internally) averaged 1.9 million total viewers and 384,000 A25-54 viewers, while Saturday Today averaged nearly 1.89 million total viewers and 378,000 A25-54 viewers on Nov. 5, according to live-plus-same-day data from Nielsen. Both shows trailed the weekend edition of GMA, which averaged 2.6 million total viewers and 471,000 A25-54 viewers on that same date.


CBS Saturday Morning lags behind Saturday Today season-to-date in the aforementioned measurements, season-to-date. SATMO is averaging 1.82 million total viewers, Saturday Today is averaging 1.93 million, SATMO averaging 342,000 A25-54 while Saturday Today is averaging 400,000. However, according to CBS, that’s the tightest gap with NBC ever.

Brian Applegate, executive producer for CBS Saturday Morning, attributes the show’s recent success to the gelling of the anchor team, which added Jeff Glor in 2019, and the show finding its rhythm.

“We want it (CBS Saturday Morning) to be a little bit different than the other two competitors,” said Applegate. “We’ve found a lot of success with longer features and taking the viewers outside of the studio. Less talk, more taking viewers to somewhere interesting, introducing them to someone fascinating, and just exposing them to things that they may have missed in their busy lives.”

Applegate also talked about the anchor team, Glor, Michelle Miller, and Dana Jacobson, saying, “The chemistry has been incredible, they get along fantastically, and I think it shows on the air.”

He continued, “Basically, every single week, each of them contributes a piece to the show. So, they are not just anchors; they are also out reporting and telling these stories.”

Applegate also pointed out that it has been a decades-long effort getting to this point. Back then, he said NBC was beating them by 1.8 million viewers, whereas now they have beaten them in total viewers a few times, but this was the first time they won all three categories, including Women 25-54.