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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Thurs.-Fri., July 2-3) -- few fireworks in pre-holiday viewing

D-FW stations "threw out" their Friday newscast numbers in deference to the July 4th holiday jump start. In other words they're not officially counted, which was just as well.

The early morning news numbers are especially vulnerable on days when many potential viewers can sleep in rather than check weather, traffic and any late-breaking developments before heading off to work. This enabled NBC5 to "win" the 6 a.m. Nielsens with a measly 73,073 D-FW viewers in a market of more than 6.6 million. Trailing in order were Fox4 (59,787 viewers), WFAA8 (33,215) and CBS11 (13,286).

Fox4 and NBC5 tied at 6 a.m. among 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming. But each station had just 39,459 apiece.

WFAA8 again took the 10 p.m. competitions in both ratings measurements while also running the table at 5 p.m. The 6 p.m. golds were split between WFAA8 in total viewers and NBC5 among 25-to-54-year-olds.

Friday's most-watched prime-time entertainment series, a 9 p.m. CBS repeat of Numb3rs drew 139,503 viewers. Over on Fox Sports Southwest, the Texas Rangers' home win over Tampa Bay averaged a respectable 126,217 viewers, edging Numb3rs in head-to-head competition in the 9 p.m. hour with 146,146 viewers.

On Thursday, WFAA8's 10 p.m. newscast impressively prevailed despite inheriting a sub-measly 9:45 to 10 p..m. lead-in audience from ABC's Private Practice rerun.

Practice made imperfect, luring just 26,572 viewers in its final quarter-hour. WFAA8 then ballooned that total to 205,933 viewers in blowing out runnerup CBS11 (119,574 viewers), which had a far bigger lead-in from CBS' repeat of The Mentalist (152,789 viewers).

WFAA8 also won comfortably at 10 p.m. among 25-to-54-year-olds after literally inheriting nothing from Private Practice. The show's closing 15 minutes registered "hashmarks" (no measurable audience) in that quarter-hour before WFAA8's late night newscast jumped to 69,812 viewers in the 25-to-54 age range.

Fox4 and WFAA8 shared the total viewer golds at 6 a.m., with the Peacock hammering home a comfy win with 25-to-54-year-olds.

WFAA8 ran the table at 6 p.m. but again slumped at 5 p.m. Fox4 had the upper hand at that hour in both ratings measurements after getting a nice bump from the preceding Judge Judy.

WFAA8, which can still overcome lousy network lead-ins at 10 p.m., has been unable to do likewise at 5 p.m. despite new promotions featuring World News anchor Charles Gibson alongside the station's John McCaa and Gloria Campos.

On Thursday, lowly ratings for the preceding Oprah Winfrey Show punched WFAA8 into fourth place in total viewers and third place with 25-to-54-year-olds.