Dancing, Conan -- and more | None | Uncle Barky's Bytes

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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Sat.-Mon., May 1-3) -- Derby, Dancing, Conan -- and more

The delayed weekend Nielsen ratings -- plus Monday -- at last are in. So let's roll.

NBC's usual marathon Saturday coverage of the Kentucky Derby culminated in the actual race at 5:30 p.m. That's when the ratings peaked, too, with a nice-sized 264,666 D-FW viewers watching Super Saver take jockey Calvin Borel's usual rail position before bursting to victory. It easily was the day's most-watched attraction, doubling the crowd for anything else.

On Sunday, Conan O'Brien's return to TV -- via a 60 Minutes interview with Steve Kroft -- drew 196,803 viewers in breezing to a win in the 6 to 7 p.m. slot. But the day's most-watched program was ABC's Desperate Housewives, which ballooned to 305,384 viewers in the 8 p.m. hour.

All of the above were Lilliputians compared to Monday's weekly performance edition of ABC's Dancing with the Stars, which amassed 420,751 viewers from 7 to 8:30 p.m. before the following Romantically Challenged sitcom plunged to 142,512.

ABC quickly recovered with a new 9 p.m. episode of Castle, which handily beat CBS' competing CSI: Miami by a score of 278,238 viewers to 223,948.

WFAA8's 10 p.m. newscast then squandered its Castle inheritance, drooping to 183,230 viewers on Day 3 of the May "sweeps" while first place CBS11 held steady with 217,162 viewers. CBS11 also won comfortably among 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming.

NBC5 again ran the table at 6 a.m., where it seems to have a lock on the proceedings.

WFAA8 won at 5 and 6 p.m. in total viewers, with Fox4 doing likewise in the 25-to-54 demographic. The local news races remain wide open in both ratings measurements at 5,6 and 10 p.m.