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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Wed., April 16) -- Mavs fall short but power up

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
The Dallas Mavericks’ 106-105 overtime loss at Memphis sends them into the San Antonio Spurs woodchipper for the first round of the NBA playoffs.

But while channeling UConn, the Mavs also can look back on a ratings victory during the final hour of Wednesday’s game on TXA21 and ESPN.

The 9 to 10 p.m. portion of Mavs-Grizzlies drew 205,938 D-FW viewers on TXA21 and added another 85,216 for the ESPN presentation. The 291,154 total easily commanded the 9 p.m. hour, with CBS’ CSI: Crime Scene Investigation rerun the runner-up (170,431 viewers).

For the entire game, Mavs-Grizzlies averaged 142,026 viewers on TXA21 and 71,013 on ESPN for a total of 213,039. Wednesday’s top prime-time draws, Fox’s two-hour American idol and CBS’ Survivor, each drew 220,140 viewers. But the Mavs’ last regular season game led all prime-time programming among advertiser-prized 18-to-49-year-olds.

Toiling in relative obscurity on Fox Sports Southwest, the Dallas Stars’ 4-3 loss at Anaheim in their opening game of the Stanley Cup playoffs averaged just 35,507 total viewers. The Stars trailed 4-0 halfway through the game, which likely suppressed the ratings a bit. Nielsen numbers for the Texas Rangers game, shifted over to FSS+, were not immediately available. The Rangers beat Seattle 3-2 with a 9th inning rally.

Here are Wednesday’s local news derby numbers.

Fox4 swept the 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. competitions in both total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming.

NBC5 won at 6 p.m. in total viewers while WFAA8 had the most 25-to-54-year-olds. The Peacock also had the most viewers at 5 p.m., with Fox4 and WFAA8 tying for first in the 25-to-54 demographic.

Also of note: CW33’s comedy-laced, Dallas-produced Eye Opener has been up and down in the early morning Nielsens. But Wednesday was a big up, particularly in the 5 to 6 a.m. results. Eye Opener ran second in that hour among 25-to-54-year-olds, easily outdrawing NBC5, WFAA8 and CBS11 while still trailing Fox4 by almost a full rating point.

Eye Opener also nipped NBC5, WFAA8 and CBS11 in total viewers during the 5 to 6 a.m. face-off.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Tues., April 15) -- CBS/NBC divide spoils

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
CBS and NBC powered up Tuesday night while their rivals went begging.

In D-FW’s total viewer Nielsens, CBS again reigned supreme with new hours of NCIS (475,787 viewers), NCIS: Los Angeles (319,559) and Person of Interest (269,849).

But among advertiser-coveted 18-to-49-year-olds, NBC ruled from start to finish with The Voice (149,808 viewers), About a Boy (91,188), Growing Up Fisher (94,444) and Chicago Fire (55,364).

The night’s biggest bomb, ABC’s return of Wife Swap, ran last among the Big Four broadcast networks in the 9 p.m. hour. It drew just 63,912 total viewers, with 26,054 in the 18-to-49 motherlode. Both of those totals were exceeded by the 90-minute, 9 p.m. premiere of FX’s Fargo, which had respective hauls of 71,013 and 35,824 viewers. Those aren’t spectacular numbers by any means, but FX generally gets a sizable spike from subsequent DVR viewership.

On Fox Sports Southwest, the Texas Rangers’ quick and efficient 5-0 win over Seattle averaged 134,925 total viewers. Wednesday night’s Rangers game will be relocated to Fox Sports Southwest Plus to accommodate the Dallas Stars’ opening round Stanley Cup playoff game on FSS against the Anaheim Ducks. The Dallas Mavericks, also in the post-season, will play their final regular season game -- Wednesday night against the Memphis Grizzlies -- on TXA21 and ESPN.

Here are Tuesday’s local news derby results:

WFAA8 bucked an anemic lead-in from Wife Swap to win in both total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming.

Fox4 swept the 6 a.m. competitions and NBC5 did likewise at 5 p.m., where it’s gradually become the station to beat at that hour when the May ratings “sweeps” fire up on Thursday, April 24th. But Fox4 also remains formidable at 5 p.m.

The 6 p.m. firsts went to CBS11 in total viewers and NBC5 in the 25-to-54 demographic.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Mon., April 14) -- more high notes for The Voice

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
Another two-hour sing-along with NBC’s The Voice topped Monday’s prime-time charts opposite ABC’s Disney music-themed Dancing with the Stars.

The Voice drew 390,572 D-FW viewers from 7 to 9 p.m. while DWTS took the silver in those hours with 319,559 viewers. Among advertiser-prized 18-to-49-year-olds, The Voice likewise called the tune with 195,402. A new episode of CBS’ 2 Broke Girls ran second in this key demographic from 7 to 7:30 p.m. before DWTS took runner-up honors from 7:30 to 9 p.m.

CBS’ new Friends with Better Lives continued to crater at 7:30 p.m. with the fewest viewers in both measurements among the network’s four sitcoms.

ABC, CBS and NBC all finished the night with drama series repeats, allowing Fox4’s 9 p.m. local newscast to take the top spots in total viewers (191,735) and 18-to-49-year-olds (91,188).

TNT’s “midseason finale” of Dallas, set to return in August, climaxed with an eye-popping three-way, a big fire in the Ewings’ Southfork living quarters, Sue Ellen on a drunken binge and a pill overdose. The 8 p.m. first-run episode drew 120,722 total viewers and a 9 p.m. repeat tacked on another 63,912.

On Fox Sports Southwest, the Texas Rangers’ lackluster 7-1 home loss to the Seattle Mariners averaged 142,026 total viewers.

NBC5 had one of its brighter days in Monday’s local news derby results. The Peacock ran the table at 5 and 6 p.m. in both total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming).

NBC5 also outdrew kingpin Fox4 at 6 a.m. in total viewers and added a 10 p.m. gold in the 25-to-54 demographic.

The other two wins went to WFAA8 in the 10 p.m. total viewers race and Fox4 at 6 a.m. among 25-to-54-year-olds.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

WFAA8: "We share tears and belly laughs and big bear hugs"

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
Dallas-based WFAA8’s first big image campaign as a Gannett-owned entity is a cup running over with made-for-TV sincerity.

The “We Share” mantra has a homespun, back porch feel while also being firmly in step with the more urgent “social media” beats of Facebook and Twitter. A male narrator, with a voice that could butter your popcorn, beckons viewers to join as one with a TV station that yearns to be your interactive Care Bear.

“At News 8, we don’t just report. We share.”

“We share tears and belly laughs and big bear hugs.”

“We share our opinion and ask you to do the same.”

Not only that, “we share our Doppler radar.” (Somehow that just doesn’t sound right.)

And for the big finish: “We dig, we hunt, we uncover -- and then we don’t just report it. We share. Let’s share.”

Shall we?



Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Fri.-Sun., April 11-13) -- kid Spieth spikes Masters but it's still mostly an older crowd

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
Ratings for Sunday’s final round of The Masters built steadily from the 1 p.m. start to the 5:51 p.m. finish on CBS.

Still, the presence of 20-year-old Dallas Jesuit grad Jordan Spieth, who played in the final twosome with eventual winner Bubba Watson, did not serve to “youthify” the D-FW numbers. He was hoping to become the youngest Masters champ ever, but finished three strokes back in a tie for second place.

CBS averaged 213,039 total viewers in beating all daytime and early evening programming on a stay-at-home rainy, windy day. Ratings peaked in the final minutes, with 340,862 viewers tuned in. The Masters’ first 15-minute segment, before Spieth and Watson teed off, drew 85,216 viewers.

Among advertiser-prized 18-to-49-year-olds, the entire Masters averaged 61,877 viewers with a high mark of 120,498 in the closing minutes. Both are far less than 50 percent of the total viewing audience. Better for selling Buicks to grizzled traditionalists than new 10-calorie, full-taste Fizzy Pop to “impressionable” younger viewers.

Over on Fox Sports Southwest, the Texas Rangers’ quickly played 1-0 daytime win over Houston averaged 120,722 total viewers.

In prime-time Sunday, AMC’s Season 7 premiere of Mad Men limped in with 42,608 viewers, matching the audience for the network’s preceding new Revolutionary War era drama, Turn. But Mad Men outdrew Turn among 18-to-49-year-olds by a score of 19,540 viewers to 9,770. At that rate, 10 episodes of either series would still fall short of one night’s typical 18-to-49 haul for AMC’s The Walking Dead, now on hiatus.

On Saturday night, the Dallas Mavericks’ playoff-clinching win over Phoenix drew 106,520 viewers on TXA21. That fell short of the competing Rangers-Astros game on FSS (149,127 total viewers). Fox’s prime-time Darlington 500 NASCAR race averaged 99,418 viewers

The Dallas Stars likewise cliched a playoff spot on Friday night. But the 3-0 win against the St. Louis Blues averaged just 21,304 viewers on FSS. TXA21’s weekly Friday night Texas Rangers game was a Colossus in comparison. The Rangers won 1-0 in a 12-inning marathon that didn’t end until after 11:15 p.m. No matter. The game ended up averaging a nice-sized 227,242 viewers. CBS’ 9 p.m. episode of Blue Bloods was Friday’s biggest overall draw with 255,647 viewers.

Here are Friday’s local news derby results:

CBS11 had the most total viewers at 10 p.m., but Fox4 dominated the 25-to-54-year-old Nielsens (the main advertiser target audience for news programming).

Fox4 notched twin wins at 6 a.m. and also ran the table at 5 p.m.

WFAA8 and CBS11 tied for the most viewers at 6 p.m., with WFAA8 alone in first with 25-to-54-year-olds.

Local D-FW TV News Note -- WFAA8 lately has been running promos urging viewers to watch the early morning Daybreak anchor team of Ron Corning and Alexa Conomos.

Still, no definitive choice has been made on Cynthia Izaguirre’s replacement after she moved to the 10 p.m. newscasts in place of the now retired Gloria Campos.

“The job is still posted. No permanent decision has been made,” WFAA8 news director said in an email reply regarding Corning’s running mate.

Conomos has been Daybreak’s longtime traffic reporter, with that slot currently being filled by Shane Allen. Corning and meteorologist Greg Fields have remained in place. WFAA8 ran third in the early morning Nielsen ratings during the February “sweeps” ratings period. The four-week May “sweeps” fire up on Thursday, April 24th and run through May 21st.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net