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Most Watched Cable Shows - March 24-30

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April 1st, 2008

Jack Black and Orlando Bloom Get Slimed at the 21st Annual Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice AwardsI know the wonks all want to say that nobody watches TV on Saturday night, but even up against basketball coverage on CBS (which outperformed a typical CBS Saturday night by a wide margin), the 21st annual Kids' Choice Awards this past Saturday night on NICK was the most watched cable program of the week with almost 7.5 million viewers (about a million and a half more viewers than the series finale of Jericho last Tuesday night). The awards were a fairly star-studded affair. Jessica Alba, Orlando Bloom, Jack Black, Janet Jackson (no wardrobe malfunction) and more.

Always a strong performer, both airings of WWE Raw on USA garnered top five appearances in the #2 and #4 spots (we sort our numbers by actual viewers, and not the household rating). MTV placed two shows in the top five, with America's Best Dance Crew at #3 and The Hills at #5. The Hills is a strong, strong performer and if we sorted based on HH Rating, it would've sewn up the #2 spot.

After that? What do you think? I play a little game now where before opening up the weekly cable spreadsheet I take a crack at guessing just how many SpongeBobs will appear in the top 20 when sorted by viewers. My guess was 12 and I was exactly right! If only my daytrading prognosticating was as good as my SpongeBob capabilities. Sigh.

Also sneaking into the list around our square-panted friend were NICK's Back at the Barnyard, about the 300th airing of High School Musical 2 (it has some legs, I have to admit) and USA's Law & Order: SVU.

Not in the list, but in the top 40 were the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball game where my hometown Washington Nationals were led to victory in the first game in their brand new stadium with a walk-off homerun by Ryan Zimmerman. Great outcome for a great new ballpark. I wish I had been back home for that. My friend Ted Leonsis was there, and claims to have called the outcome.

Hannah Montanna and Ella Enchanted made the top 40 for Disney, USA had yet another Law & Order: SVU, TBS had the movie Walking Tall, and Comedy Central made the list with South Park. Piling on to NICK's success were Back at the Barnyard, Fairly Odd Parents, Zoey 101, two iCarly airings and nine more SpongeBobs. That's right. I said NINE more. No April Fools either.

Full Top 20 Cable Results for the week ending 3/30/2008:

Rank PROGRAMS NET DAY(S) HH Rating Live+SD Live+SD AA(000)
1 S KIDS CHOICE 08 NICK SATURDAY 3.8 7,449
2 WWE Entertainment (WWE Raw) USA MONDAY 3.0 5,277
3 AMERICAS BEST DANCE CREW MTV THURSDAY 2.8 4,941
4 WWE Entertainment (WWE Raw) USA MONDAY 2.8 4,848
5 HILLS, THE MTV MONDAY 3.1 4,789
6 SpongeBob NICK SATURDAY 2.8 4,672
7 SpongeBob NICK SATURDAY 2.6 4,468
8 HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 2 DSNY FRIDAY 2.7 4,402
9 SpongeBob NICK SATURDAY 2.8 4,381
10 SPONGEBOB NICK SATURDAY 2.6 4,290
11 SPONGEBOB NICK FRIDAY 2.3 4,233
12 BACK AT THE BARNYARD NICK SATURDAY 2.6 4,208
13 SPONGEBOB NICK SATURDAY 2.7 4,178
14 LAW & ORDER: SVU USA THURSDAY 2.7 4,109
15 SPONGEBOB NICK SATURDAY 2.5 4,006
16 SPONGEBOB NICK SATURDAY 2.6 3,962
17 SPONGEBOB NICK FRIDAY 2.3 3,918
18 SPONGEBOB NICK SUNDAY 2.5 3,795
19 SPONGEBOB NICK SATURDAY 2.6 3,747
20 SPONGEBOB NICK FRIDAY 2.1 3,720

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Nielsen Ratings Data: ©2008 Nielsen Media Research, Inc. All Rights Reserved

 
  • Marianne

    How could you compare the Kid's Choice Awards with Jericho? Those awards featured all things hot within a child's world and many stars that adults like too.

    I don't think many kids(let alone adults) were staying up til 10pm on a Tuesday to watch Jericho.

  • Marianne

    How could you compare the Kid’s Choice Awards with Jericho? Those awards featured all things hot within a child’s world and many stars that adults like too.

    I don’t think many kids(let alone adults) were staying up til 10pm on a Tuesday to watch Jericho.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Marianne, it was not intended as a “reasonable” comparison, but to infer that something with not much internet buzz that I imagine many people had no idea was even on at all, had 1.5 million more viewers.

    I agree with your second sentence 100%

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Marianne, it was not intended as a “reasonable” comparison, but to infer that something with not much internet buzz that I imagine many people had no idea was even on at all, had 1.5 million more viewers.

    I agree with your second sentence 100%

  • Daniel C.

    Why are “demo” ratings for cable not available to you. While I'm thinking about it, why are there no overnights for cable. It would sure put viewership in a more proper perspective.

  • Daniel C.

    Why are “demo” ratings for cable not available to you. While I’m thinking about it, why are there no overnights for cable. It would sure put viewership in a more proper perspective.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Daniel, great questions but sadly in the pantheon of “Why didn’t I buy GOOG when it was $75/sh”. I just didn’t.

    Nielsen just doesn’t make that information available to us. While I see Cable data for individual shows come out sometimes, leading me to believe there is at least some overnight data, it’s not compiled in the aggregate and published anywhere.

    They give us access to a lot of weekly data, and considering what we’re paying for it ($0.00) and that Nielsen is in the business of making money, I do somewhat understand why there is less than a complete free flow of information.

    There are a few public sources for the overnight information, but I like Berman’s because he’s providing viewer numbers (as opposed to HH Rating) for the total and 18-49. Effectively, all I’m doing besides adding my own editorial is putting his data into a table that’s easier on my eyes.

    With more than 50% of viewership usually watching cable channels I completey agree that only adding that would provide the proper and full perspective. I wish Nielsen provided age demo breakouts for cable as well,but we don’t see it.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Daniel, great questions but sadly in the pantheon of “Why didn't I buy GOOG when it was $75/sh”. I just didn't.

    Nielsen just doesn't make that information available to us. While I see Cable data for individual shows come out sometimes, leading me to believe there is at least some overnight data, it's not compiled in the aggregate and published anywhere.

    They give us access to a lot of weekly data, and considering what we're paying for it ($0.00) and that Nielsen is in the business of making money, I do somewhat understand why there is less than a complete free flow of information.

    There are a few public sources for the overnight information, but I like Berman's because he's providing viewer numbers (as opposed to HH Rating) for the total and 18-49. Effectively, all I'm doing besides adding my own editorial is putting his data into a table that's easier on my eyes.

    With more than 50% of viewership usually watching cable channels I completey agree that only adding that would provide the proper and full perspective. I wish Nielsen provided age demo breakouts for cable as well,but we don't see it.

  • Scott

    I don’t understand why you would even mention Jericho unless yoour intention is to once again get Jericho fans to read your blog even after multiple “Final” posts about the show. If you weren’t making a reasonable comparison but were instead infering something about internet buzz then you should have said that in the post.

    In my opinion (and I hope I’m wrong because I find your site very informative)you were doing this to take a shot at Jericho fans. Having read some of your comments it’s seems that, even though you claim to like the show, you can’t stand it’s fans.

  • Scott

    I don't understand why you would even mention Jericho unless yoour intention is to once again get Jericho fans to read your blog even after multiple “Final” posts about the show. If you weren't making a reasonable comparison but were instead infering something about internet buzz then you should have said that in the post.

    In my opinion (and I hope I'm wrong because I find your site very informative)you were doing this to take a shot at Jericho fans. Having read some of your comments it's seems that, even though you claim to like the show, you can't stand it's fans.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Bill Gorman

    Daniel, My guess is even as cable viewership grew, the old ways both at Nielsen and at the media that covers the TV industry change very slowly.
    Nielsen provided lots more information about broadcast when it was the only game in town [30 years ago] and they continue to do the same thing long after cable viewers have grown into the majority overall.
    Simple inertia.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Bill Gorman

    Daniel, My guess is even as cable viewership grew, the old ways both at Nielsen and at the media that covers the TV industry change very slowly.
    Nielsen provided lots more information about broadcast when it was the only game in town [30 years ago] and they continue to do the same thing long after cable viewers have grown into the majority overall.
    Simple inertia.

  • NATION

    “Janet Jackson (no wardrobe malfunction)”

    HA HA HA HA!

    Oh how timely! You should write for Jay Leno!

    Suck it Robbert Seidman.

  • NATION

    “Janet Jackson (no wardrobe malfunction)”

    HA HA HA HA!

    Oh how timely! You should write for Jay Leno!

    Suck it Robbert Seidman.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    @Nation: I’d agree my forecasting skills are much better than my comedic talents. I forecast you’re among the Jericho faithful who believe Nielsen is horribly flawed in its measurement.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    @Nation: I'd agree my forecasting skills are much better than my comedic talents. I forecast you're among the Jericho faithful who believe Nielsen is horribly flawed in its measurement.

  • NATION

    No, actually I have never watched a single episode of Jericho. I couldn’t even tell you what the show is about.

    Lay off the “comedy” and stick to the numbers. I forecast that you are among the faithful to those.

    Have a great day Seidman.

  • NATION

    No, actually I have never watched a single episode of Jericho. I couldn't even tell you what the show is about.

    Lay off the “comedy” and stick to the numbers. I forecast that you are among the faithful to those.

    Have a great day Seidman.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Fair enough, NATION and…ouch! Beatdown by a commenter on my own blog on April Fools day.

    Ah the humility… ;)

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Fair enough, NATION and…ouch! Beatdown by a commenter on my own blog on April Fools day.

    Ah the humility… ;)

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