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'30 ROCK' SETS NEW SERIES HIGHS IN 18-49 AND TOTAL VIEWERS

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October 31st, 2008

I knew NBC wasn't crazy (as some had suggested) for bringing back 30 Rock, but when I wrote that last April, I couldn't have foreseen the Sarah Palin effect shooting 30 Rock to record numbers.  But good for Tina Fey, NBC, and all of 30 Rock.  Below is via NBC press release, but you can see the full night's ratings details here.

THE THIRD-SEASON PREMIERE OF THE EMMY AWARD-WINNING COMEDY SURGES 21 PERCENT IN 18-49 AND 16 PERCENT IN TOTAL VIEWERS VERSUS LAST YEAR'S PREMIERE

'The Office' GROWS 12 PERCENT IN 18-49 AND 17 PERCENT IN TOTAL VIEWERS VERSUS LAST WEEK, AND FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER TOPS 'CSI' IN ADULTS 18-49 IN HEAD-TO-HEAD COMPETITION

'KATH & KIM' AND 'ER' ALSO POST WEEK-TO-WEEK GROWTH IN BOTH 18-49 AND TOTAL VIEWERS

'ER' WINS ITS HOUR IN ADULTS 18-49, ADULTS 18-34 AND ADULTS 25-54, TOPPING FRESHMEN SERIES ON ABC AND CBS

BURBANK, Calif.  October 31, 2008 Last night, the third season premiere of the Emmy Award-winning comedy "30 Rock" set new series records in both adults 18-49 and total viewers, according to "fast affiliate-based" "live plus same day" viewing figures from Nielsen Media Research.

Last night from 9:31-10:01 p.m. ET, the third season premiere of "30 Rock" scored new series-high numbers, delivering a 4.1 rating, 10 share in adults 18-49 and 8.5 million viewers overall. "Rock" was up 21 percent in 18-49 rating and 16 percent in total viewers versus last season's premiere (a 3.4/9 in 18-49 and 7.3 million viewers on Thursday, Oct. 4, 2007 at 8:30 p.m.).

Versus its three-week run last Spring in this post-"Office" time period, last night's "30 Rock" surged by 52 percent in 18-49 rating (4.1 vs. 2.7) and 57 percent in total viewers (8.5 million vs. 5.4 million). "30 Rock" retained 87 percent of its 18-49 lead-in from "The Office," easily its best retention so far in the post-"Office" time slot and well ahead of its average retention in this time period last season of 69 percent. "30 Rock" ranked #1 in its highly competitive time period in men 18-49 and men 18-34, topping CBS's "CSI," ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" and Fox's "Kitchen Nightmares" in those demos.

Last night from 9-9:31 p.m. ET, "The Office" (4.7/12 in 18-49, 9.3 million viewers overall) increased versus the prior week by 12 percent in adults 18-49 (to a 4.7 from a 4.2) and by 17 percent in total viewers (to 9.3 million from 8.0 million) to deliver its top 18-49 rating since October 9 and its largest overall viewership since its season premiere on September 25.

"The Office" ranked #2 in its time period in adults 18-49, topping a first-run episode of CBS's "CSI" for the first time ever in that key demographic (pending updates of these preliminary results). "The Office" ranked #1 in the half-hour in adults 18-34, men 18-34 and men 18-34, ahead of "CSI," ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" and Fox's "Kitchen Nightmares" in those demographic measures.

From 10:01-11 p.m. ET, "ER" (3.4/9 in 18-49, 9.1 million viewers overall) won its time period in adults 18-49, adults 18-34, adults 25-54 and virtually all other key demographics over the freshmen dramas "Eleventh Hour" on CBS and "Life on Mars" on ABC. "ER" has now finished #1 in this time period in adults 18-49, excluding sports, for four weeks in a row. Versus last week, "ER" was up 6 percent in 18-49 rating (3.4/9 vs. 3.2/8) and 3 percent in total viewers (9.1 million vs. 8.8 million).

NBC's Thursday night began at 8 p.m. ET, when "My Name is Earl" (2.4/7, 6.2 million viewers overall) won its competitive slot in men 18-34, ahead of CBS's "Survivor," ABC's "Ugly Betty," Fox's "Kitchen Nightmares" encore and CW's "Smallville" in that demo. "Earl" ranked #2 in adults 18-49 and other key demos.

At 8:30 p.m. ET, "Kath & Kim" (2.3/6 in 18-49, 5.5 million viewers overall) increased week-to-week by 5 percent in 18-49 rating (2.3 vs. 2.2) and 9 percent in total viewers (5.5 million vs. 5.0 million). "Kath & Kim" retained 96 percent of its "Earl" lead-in among adults 18-49 (up from an 88 percent retention last week) and built on the "Earl" lead-in by 5 percent in adults 18-34 and 16 percent in women 18-34.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for Thursday night are: CBS, 3.9/10; ABC, 3.6/10; NBC, 3.4/9; Fox and CW, 1.6/4. In overall total viewers, October 30 preliminary results are: CBS, 14.4 million; ABC, 10.7 million; NBC, 8.0 million; CW, 3.9 million; Fox, 3.8 million.

Note that all national ratings are "live plus same day" unless otherwise indicated.

 
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