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Nielsen Ratings Fri, April 25: Moonlight Is Back and CBS Wins the Night

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April 26th, 2008

Scoreboard for Fri. April 25, 2008 CBS NBC ABC CW FOX
Total Viewers (million) 8.87 5.78 4.58 4.21 3.80
Rating/Share: Adults 18-49 2.2/7 1.6/5 1.2/4 1.3/4 1.3/4

Well, the first Friday night of May Sweeps (even though it's still April) was a pretty bad night overall for the broadcast networks.  CBS won the night in total viewers and the 18-49 demographic, followed by second place NBC which also was second in the 18-49 demo. ABC was third overall, but last in the demo.  CW was fourth overall and tied for 3rd in the demo with FOX (which was last overall) on the strength of the soon to be off the CW and onto MyNetTV Friday Night Smackdown!

But I know what our fan base likely wants to hear about is Moonlight.  It seems like forever since there was a new installment of Moonlight to write about and I'm sure a lot has happened in all our lives since then.

Moonlight pulled 7.99 million viewers and a 2.1/6 in the 18-49 demo.  That was about a million lower than Ghost Whisperer (9.00 million and a 2.3/9)  and 1.6 million lower than Numb3rs with 9.61 and a 2.2/7.  While the 9pm hour always seems to lose from 8pm and then gain it back at 10pm, the size of the gap seems to be shrinking, which from the perspective of a Moonlight fan should be viewed as a good thing.

Sadly, it's hard to really call much from the night "good news", but nonetheless, Moonlight was the third most watched show of the entire night and likely won the 18-49 demo in its timeslot.  I say "likely" only because I haven't seen the hourly demo numbers for Dateline (it did a 1.9/6 in the demo from 9p-11p).

While Moonlight and the other CBS shows were more or less in line with their season averages, they were up against very weak competition on FOX and ABC (and NBC was very weak in the 8pm hour, as well).  Still, this may just be the way Fridays are now.

Next week is a similar scenario with FOX running an old movie, ABC running Duel, NBC running Dateline and CW running Smackdown.  On the surface, Moonlight looks poised to fare as well next week overall and in the demo as it did this week against the other broadcast network competition.

Given it was 3rd out of 10 shows and how bad the numbers were for everything NOT on CBS, I'd say overall with next week seemingly shaping up similarly that Moonlight's "bubble" status at least improved a little.  Hopefully for its loyal fans that is the case. Either way, I'm sure they were very glad to get a new episode and looking forward to next week..

You are of course welcome to look at the night's numbers and come to your own conclusions:

Time Net Show Viewers (Millons) 18-49 Rating/Share
8:00 ABC America's Funniest Home Videos (R ) 5.02 1.3/5
  CBS Ghost Whisperer 9 2.3/9
  NBC Most Outrageous Moments (R ) 3.96 0.9/3
  CW Friday Night Smackdown! (8p-10p) 4.21 1.3/3
  FOX 13 Going on 30 8p-10p (R ) 3.8 1.3/4
         
9:00 ABC Duel 3.73 1.0/3
  CBS Moonlight 7.99 2.1/6
  NBC Dateline (9p-11p) 6.69 1.9/6
         
10:00 ABC 20/20 4.98 1.6/5
  CBS Numb3rs 9.61 2.2/7

HH ratings junkies, check out Zap2it.

Nielsen Ratings Source: Nielsen Media Research. Full night's results available via Marc Berman/Mediaweek.

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