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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Wed.-Thurs., May 22-23) -- Fox4's 9 p.m. news again is leader of prime-time pack

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
The May ratings “sweeps” are over, but on the night after it was the same story for Fox4’s 9 p.m. local newscast.

It paced all of Thursday’s prime-time TV attractions with 168,703 D-FW viewers and 54,346 within the advertiser-prized 18-to-49-year-old age range.

Early in the night, ABC scored by digging up Farah Fawcett for a two-hour special that won the 7 to 9 p.m. slot in total viewers (154,645) and tied Fox’s competing Paradise Hotel for the lead among 18-to-49ers (27,173 apiece).

On Wednesday, the last day of the sweeps, NBC’s prime-time Chicago trilogy (Med, Fire, P.D.) led from start to stop in total viewers, with P.D. pulling in the biggest haul of 224,938. ABC’s reenactments of All in the Family and The Jeffersons also did well, running a solid second in total viewers from 7 to 9 p.m. before Whiskey Cavalier drooped to a last place finish among the Big Four broadcast networks at 9 p.m.

In the 18-to-49-year-old arena, ABC took the top spot from 7 to 9 p.m., with Fox4’s local newscast then controlling the 9 p.m. hour.

Here are the Wednesday-Thursday local news derby results.

Wednesday -- CBS11 drew the most total viewers at 10 p.m. while Fox4 won among 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming).

Fox4 cruised to twin wins at 6 a.m. and NBC5 swept the 6 p.m. races. The two stations split the 5 p.m. firsts, with the Peacock tops in total viewers and Fox4 winning with 25-to-54-year-olds.

Thursday -- Two stations split all the spoils. WFAA8 had the most total viewers at 10 p.m. and also at 5 and 6 p.m. Fox4 swept the 6 a.m. competitions and pulled in the most 25-to-54-year-olds at 5, 6 and 10 p.m.

LOCAL TV NEWS NOTE: -- Carolyn Mungo has been promoted from executive news director at WFAA8 to vice president and station manager of the Dallas-based, TEGNA-owned station. She’ll continue to report to president and general manager Brad Ramsey, whose new duties will include spread-eagling himself as senior vice president overseeing TEGNA’s TV stations in Austin and San Antonio (KVUE and KENS respectively).

in a memo, TEGNA executive vice president and chief operating officer Lynn Beall said that Mungo’s “efforts to innovate, experiment and build a deep and loyal connection with DFW audiences across platforms make her perfectly suited for this leadership role at WFAA.”

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

May "sweeps" finals: CBS11 makes it a 10 p.m. threepeat in total viewers while Fox4 again sweeps 25-to-54-year-old demographic

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
CBS11 has logged a full TV season’s worth of 10 p.m. “sweeps” wins by reigning in May with total viewers after also winning November and February.

Meanwhile, Fox4 repeated last May’s four-bagger in the key 25-to-54-year-old demographic (main advertiser target audience for news programming) while NBC5 and WFAA8 joined CBS11 in logging one win apiece.

Here are the complete results of Nielsen Media Research’s latest report card, with year-to-year audience gains or losses in parentheses.

10 P.M.

Total Viewers
CBS11 -- 147,615 (plus 19,419)
WFAA8 -- 140,586 (plus 5,266)
NBC5 -- 119,498 (minus 8,698)
Fox4 -- 112,469 (minus 1,485)

25-to-54-Year-Olds
Fox4 -- 51,543 (plus 1,541)
NBC5/WFAA8 -- 34,362 apiece (minus 3,875 & plus 2,008 respectively)
CBS11 -- 31,499 (plus 2,086)

Comments: CBS11 now has gone a full year without hiring anyone to replace anchor Doug Dunbar’s desk mate, Kaley O’Kelley, who’s now anchoring early mornings in Phoenix. No problem. Dunbar has soloed his way through three straight sweeps periods, with CBS11 winning all of them in total viewers. Not only that, the station recorded the biggest year-to-year gains in this measurement while also picking up a couple of thousand 25-to-54-year-olds.

The CBS network continues to provide the strongest total viewer lead-ins with its 9 p.m. entertainment programming. So that doesn’t hurt at all. In contrast, WFAA8 deserves credit for finishing a close second in total viewers despite worst-in-the-market lead-ins from ABC entertainment attractions. May also marked Chris Lawrence’s first sweeps month as longtime anchor John McCaa’s successor.

Fox4 again ran last in total viewers but again won by a solid margin in the 25-to-54 demographic most important to station bean-counters. This is a big face-saver for elder stateswoman Clarice Tinsley. Her 10 p.m. edition basically is a condensed version of Fox4’s one-hour 9 p.m. news, which continues to roll opposite network entertainment programming.

NBC5 is the only station to lose viewers in both ratings measurements from a year ago. That’s not a good look.

6 A.M.

Total Viewers
Fox4 -- 105,440 (minus 8,514)
WFAA8 -- 70,293 (plus 6,194)
NBC5 -- 49,205 (minus 14,894)
CBS11 -- 35,147 (minus 7,586)

25-to-54-Year-Olds
Fox4 -- 54,407 (minus 7,360)
WFAA8 -- 34,362 (plus 2,008)
NBC5/CBS11 -- 14,318 apiece (minus 9,032 & minus 6,262 respectively)

Comments: Fox4’s Good Day continues to win by relatively comfortable margins, but WFAA8 lately is moving on up while making this a two-station race in both of the main audience measurements. It’s the only station to show year-to-year audience gains, with May being the first sweeps month without co-anchor Ron Corning, who left after an eight-year tenure on Daybreak.

NBC5 in particular has fallen off the map in the early mornings, and now has a two-woman anchor team after staffer Laura Harris replaced Marc Fein and joined veteran incumbent Deborah Ferguson. In the May 2018 sweeps, the Peacock tied WFAA8 for a distant second place in total viewers. Pulling into a third-place tie with NBC5 in the 25-to-54 barometer counts as a moral victory for CBS11.

6 P.M.

Total Viewers
WFAA8 -- 140,586 (plus 19,510)
NBC5 -- 133,557 (plus 12,481)
Fox4 -- 119,498 (plus 12,666)
CBS11 -- 112,469 (plus 5,637)

25-to-54-Year-Olds
Fox4 -- 51,543 (plus 10,365)
NBC5/WFAA8 -- 34,362 apiece (plus 4,949 & plus 16,714 respectively)
CBS11 -- 22,908 (plus 2,319)

Comments: All four stations can throw confetti in the air for showing year-to-year improvements in both ratings measurements. But WFAA8 can add a full-blown ice cream social for logging the biggest rebound. The station particularly improved among 25-to-54-year-olds after finishing a disastrous last a year ago.

5 P.M.

Total Viewers
NBC5 -- 126,527 (plus 5,451)
Fox4 -- 119,498 (plus 19,789)
WFAA8 -- 112,469 (plus 27,004)
CBS11 -- 56,234 (minus 14,987)

25-to-54-Year-Olds
Fox4 -- 37,226 (plus 7,813)
NBC5 -- 28,635 (plus 2,163)
WFAA8 -- 17,181 (plus 5,419)
CBS11 -- 11,454 (minus 6,194)

Comments: This is the least important of the four battlegrounds, but CBS11 still has to wonder what hit it. The station lost substantial ground in both measurements while its three rivals all showed year-to-year improvements. NBC5 and Fox4 both defended their crowns from last May.

In other May sweeps ratings highlights:

*** Fox4’s 9 p.m. news routed the competing network programming among 18-to-49-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for entertainment fare) and ran a close second to CBS in total viewers. That’s quite an achievement.

*** At 4 p.m., NBC5 continued to run a comfy first in total viewers against one-hour local editions on WFAA and CBS11. But Fox4’s double dose of the syndicated Judge Judy won the 4 p.m. hour by solid margins with both 25-to-54-year-olds and 18-to-49ers.

*** CBS11’s syndicated Wheel of Fortune rolled anew with 6:30 p.m. sweeps in total viewers and both of the younger viewer measurements. WFAA8 continues to pay for making the worst programming decision in D-FW history by dumping Wheel back in 2005 because station management thought it skewed too old in comparison to its replacement part, Entertainment Tonight. In the 14 years since, Wheel hosts Pat Sajak and Vanna White have both survived high-definition and continued to whip ET and the two other competing entertainment rag mags.

*** The network evening newscasts are supposed to be dinosaurs, right? Not exactly. Although airing at a time (5:30 p.m.) when the viewing pool is considerably smaller, both NBC’s Nightly News and ABC’s World News Tonight averaged more total viewers than their respective network’s 7 to 10 p.m. slates of prime-time entertainment programming. And it’s not even close, with World News Tonight flexing the biggest gap by drawing 175,733 viewers per edition while ABC’s prime-time lineup averaged 91,381 viewers.

*** Fox4’s 7 to 10 a.m. portion of Good Day continued to dominate all competing network and local programming, winning in total viewers and with both younger audience measurements. This is what is known as a cash cow.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Tues., May 21) -- NCIS and Masterchef Junior take prime-time golds on penultimate night of May "sweeps"

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
NCIS wrapped its 16th season Tuesday with -- what else -- a number one overall ranking among all prime-time TV attractions.

CBS’ most enduring scripted series drew 309,289 D-FW viewers before the network’s two-hour premiere of Blood & Treasure dipped to 175,733. But that still was almost good enough to win its 8 to 10 p.m. slot, with NBC’s The Voice narrowly prevailing (189,791 viewers).

In the advertiser-prized 18-to-49-year-old demographic, Fox’s Masterchef Junior took the 7 p.m. hour with a night’s high 54,346 viewers before ABC’s black-ish and Bless This Mess won from 8 to 9 p.m. and Fox4’s local newscast commanded the 9 p.m. hour.

In Tuesday’s local news derby results, Fox4 for the second straight day came within one win of a very rare double grand slam. The station again topped the 6 a.m. and 5 and 6 p.m. Nielsens in both total viewers and among 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming). But NBC5 broke in with a 10 p.m. first in total viewers while Fox4 took the 25-to-54 crown. The May “sweeps” ratings period ends on Wednesday and we’ll have a full report tomorrow unless your friendly content provider takes to a sick bed or something.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Mon., May 20) -- all in a night's work for Fox4 news

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
Despite the presence of two-hour doses of NBC’s The Voice and ABC’s The Bachelorette, Fox4’s 9 p.m. local newscast paced all prime-time programming in both key audience demographics Monday.

The news drew 231,967 D-FW viewers, with 78,499 in the advertiser-coveted 18-to-49-year-old age range. The respective runners-up were The Voice (168,703 total viewers) and Fox’s Beat Shazam (72,461 in the 18-to-49 realm).

Meanwhile, The Voice is starting to skew older than NCIS or Blue Bloods in the key 18-to-49 demographic. It averaged a sub-paltry 9,058 in running fourth from 7 to 9 p.m.

In the four-way local news derby results, Fox4 came within inches of a very rare double grand slam. The station ran first at 6 a.m., 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. in both total viewers and with 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming). But at 10 p.m., WFAA8 impressively trampolined off a garbage 9 p.m. lead-in from ABC’s The Fix to beat Fox4 in total viewers. Fox4 won the 10 p.m. Nielsens among 25-to-54-year-olds.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Fri.-Sun., May 17-19) -- a big yawn for latest Idol finale

By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
ABC closed down its second season of American Idol Sunday night while D-FW viewers barely took notice.

Most of them likely had their attention fixated on the series finale of HBO’s Game of Thrones, which aired directly opposite Idol. Unfortunately, local numbers for HBO still aren’t available on the otherwise detailed listings available to your friendly content provider. Nationally, though, HBO says that GOT hit all-time highs of 13.6 million viewers at the appointed hour on the main HBO outlet and 19.3 million on the network’s various “platforms,” including streaming.

Idol particularly bottomed out with advertiser-coveted 18-to-40-year-olds, with its full three hours (7 to 10 p.m.) averaging a paltry 21,134 viewers in this key demographic. Fox4’s 9 p.m. local newscast led all prime-time programming with 60,384 viewers while CBS’ 60 Minutes (30,192), NBC’s Dateline and Fox’s Hotel Transylvania (27,173 viewers each), and NBC’s Good Girls (24,154) also outdrawing Idol.

Idol’s overall average of 147,615 total viewers trailed 60 Minutes (217,908) and Fox4’s news (168,703).

On Saturday, NBC’s telecast of The Preakness, which had a truncated field and little buzz, averaged 98,410 total viewers during the 5 p.m. hour to at least win its time slot.

Friday’s prime-time pacesetter, CBS’ 9 p.m. episode of Hawaii Five-0, had just 140,506 total viewers. NBC’s 7 p.m. hour of The Blacklist was tops with 18-to-49ers (27,173).

Here are Friday’s local news derby results for the 17th weekday of the May “sweeps” ratings period, which ends on Wednesday.

WFAA8 swept the 10 p.m. competitions in both total viewers and with 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming).

Fox4 ran the table at 6 a.m. and NBC5 did likewise at 5 p.m. The 6 p.m. winners were the Peacock in total viewers and Fox4 among 25-to-54-year-olds.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net