‘Nightline’ Is Thriving in Late Night

By Andrew Gauthier 

The New York Times

In the heavyweight battle being waged in late-night television, an awful lot of rounds lately have been going to a third man in the ring, the one not slugging it out with punch lines.

While most of the attention, starting in June, has focused on the fight between the new host of NBC’s “Tonight Show,” Conan O’Brien, and his CBS rival, David Letterman, ABC’s venerable news program “Nightline” has managed mostly to fly under the radar–in an upward trajectory.

Viewership for the news show is up 14 percent in the last six weeks compared with the same week a year ago, and, in the most recent two weeks, the program has frequently grabbed the most viewers of the three shows. More…