Post-Olympics Sees TV Ratings Slide

Michelle ObamaOn first blush, NBC's Beijing Olympics promotion for its other TV shows has come in underwhelming. "Deal or No Deal"--back from a two-week layoff due to the Olympic coverage--lost 18% of its prime-time ratings to a Nielsen preliminary 2.8 number among 18-49 viewers. Last year's season average was a 3.4 rating.

Also underwhelming for most of the networks on Monday night were their respective ratings concerning coverage of the Democratic National Convention. NBC was tops among the big three networks for their 10 p.m. to 11 p.m. coverage, with a 1.5 rating. CBS earned a 0.9 number, and ABC took in a 0.8. But Nielsen cautioned that these numbers were preliminary figures that do not account for time zone adjustments.

The early convention winner among the broadcast networks was not any of the big three networks. That honor went to PBS--which grabbed a 2.1 rating/3 share, down from a 2.3 rating/4 share on the first night PBS aired the 2004 Democratic convention. PBS aired three hours of coverage--from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., while each of the commercial broadcast networks offered one hour of prime-time coverage on the first night of the convention.



Overall, NBC and "Deal" offered the best results of any network and program. "Deal" was the top-rated show, and NBC averaged a preliminary 2.3 rating/6 share.

With the Olympics out of the way, many networks were able to earn better numbers for their shows on Monday--with many rising over two ratings points, especially CBS. CBS repeats of "Two and a Half Men" and "The New Adventures of Old Christine" each earned a 2.5 rating at 9 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.

Earlier in the evening, during the 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. hour, CBS also scored well with 2.0 repeats of "The Big Bang Theory" and "How I Met Your Mother."

With most of the networks still in the transitional summer phase of their prime-time lineup--as well as including slim convention ratings--Univision was able to make TV hay, coming in second on the night with a 1.9/5. Univision's overall Monday numbers gained when the English-language networks took on low-rated convention programming at 10 p.m.

After NBC and Univision, CBS was third on the night with a 1.8/5. Fox came in fourth at 1.6/5, ABC was fifth at 0.8/2, and CW finished sixth at 0.7/2.

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