Nielsen Ratings Saturday, August 2: Will Broadcast Nets Start Selling Saturday Night Bandwidth?

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August 3rd, 2008

Scoreboard FOX CBS ABC NBC
Total Viewers (million) 4.47 3.65 3.33 2.62
Rating/Share: Adults 18-49 1.4/6 0.7/3 1.1/4 0.8/3

As ever I'm tempted to just re-run a previous overnight Saturday post because I'm not sure anyone would really notice the difference. There's really nothing to see here unless you are one to revel in the impending doom for broadcast television. If that's the case, you may wish to savor this.

As is typical, FOX was the most-watched broadcast network on a lowly Saturday night with its time-honored combo of Cops and America's Most Wanted giving FOX the most viewers and the best 18-49 year old demographic performance. But, hardly anyone watched FOX either.

A special airing of Saturday Night's Main Event on NBC, didn't turn out to be the main event. An encore of Flashpoint got a lot more viewers and tied it (which doesn't give it any bragging rights at all) in the the 18-49 demo.

NBC seems to be searching for record low Saturday audiences leading up to the Olympics. Perhaps it *should* give Quarterlife another go. At least that would generate some Internet buzz. If you thought it's not possible that two repeats of The Office could do worse than last week when it generated a mere 1.56 million viewers -- you were right. But only by 8,000 viewers or so.

As pitiful as ABC's performance was with two hours worth of encore Wipeout, it came in second in both the 8pm and 9pm hours. A repeat of Eli Stone at 10pm wasn't as fortunate, finishing last.

Full details:

Time Net Show Viewers (Millions) 18-49 Rating/Share
8:00 ABC Wipeout (R) 8p-10p 3.68 1.3/5
  CBS The Unit (R) 2.71 0.5/2
  NBC The Office (R) 2 episodes 8p-9p 1.64 0.5/2
  FOX Cops 4.30 1.4/6
9:00 FOX America's Most Wanted 4.65 1.4/5
  CBS Flashpoint (R) 3.61 0.7/3
  NBC Saturday Night's Main Event 2.38 0.7/3
10:00 NBC Law & Order: CI (R) 3.86 1.1/4
  CBS 48 Hours Mystery (R) 4.64 1.1/4
  ABC Eli Stone (R) 2.63 0.8/3

Nielsen Ratings Source: Nielsen Media Research. Source Marc Berman/Mediaweek.


Overnights: Local metered-market ratings service of Nielsen Station Index (NSI) in which household ratings and shares are provided to clients the morning following the day or evening of telecast.

Rating: Estimated percentage of the universe of TV households (or other specified group) tuned to a program in the average minute. Ratings are expressed as a percent.

Share (of Audience): The percent of households (or persons) using television who are tuned to a specific program, station or network in a specific area at a specific time. (See also, Rating, which represents tuning or viewing as a percent of the entire population being measured.)

LIVE+SD: The number that watched a program either while it was broadcast OR watched via DVR on the same day [through 3AM the next day] the program was broadcast.

For more information see Numbers 101.

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