Daytime stars fare poorly in visit to prime-time slot


NEW YORK (AP) – Judging by the ratings, daytime’s biggest stars may want to think twice about venturing into prime time.

The Daytime Emmy awards show, on ABC last Friday, was seen by 6.1 million people, according to Nielsen Media Research. That ranked it No. 70 among prime-time shows last week, behind such entries as reruns of “Wife Swap” and “The King of Queens.”

That’s down from 7.6 million viewers last year, and less than half what the audience was in 2000. The awards show’s peak audience of just under 22 million people came in 1993, when people were still wondering whether Susan Lucci would ever win.

It’s a distressing sign for organizers, who tried to pump up the entertainment value this year by moving the show to Los Angeles for the first time and opening with a performance by Rick Springfield. ABC also lengthened the show to three hours and moved it up from its usual mid-May broadcast.

CBS and Fox again dominated as the May ratings sweep began; the two networks had 22 of the 30 most-watched prime-time programs last week. Fox’s “House” is particularly on a roll, scoring its biggest audience ever with 24.5 million viewers.

CBS averaged 13.1 million viewers (8.6 rating, 14 share), while Fox had 10.3 million (6.3, 10), and won among the 18-to-49-year-old viewers sought by advertisers for the 10th straight week. NBC had 8.9 million (5.9, 10), ABC 8.2 million (5.4, 9), the WB 3 million (2.0, 3), UPN 2.9 million (1.9, 3) and Pax TV 450,000 (0.3, 1).

Among the Spanish-language networks, Univision averaged 3.4 million viewers (1.9, 3), Telemundo had 960,000 (0.6, 1) and TeleFutura 500,000 (0.3, 0).

NBC’s “Nightly News” dominated the evening news ratings race, averaging 8.6 million viewers (6.1, 13). ABC’s “World News Tonight” had 7.5 million viewers (5.3, 11) and the “CBS Evening News” had 7 million (5.0, 10).

A ratings point represents 1,102,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation’s estimated 110.2 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

For the week of April 24-30, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: “American Idol” (Tuesday), Fox, 28.67 million; “American Idol” (Wednesday), Fox, 28.27 million; “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” CBS, 27.37 million; “House,” Fox, 24.52 million; “Desperate Housewives,” ABC, 21.30 million; “Grey’s Anatomy,” ABC, 20.76 million; “CSI: Miami,” CBS, 18.74 million; “Without a Trace,” CBS, 17.93 million; “Survivor: Panama-Exile Island,” CBS, 17.09 million; “Deal or No Deal” (Monday), NBC, 15.58 million.

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