Gotham’s independents grabbed a lion’s share of the young adult television viewers in the key 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. programming block, leaving the network affiliates to fend for the rest, according to Nielsen demographic statistics for the November sweeps.

Indeed, WPIX’s young-skewing block of off-network sitcoms airing in the time slot was a strong performer, though competition for the younger audience was stiff. The station won a bulk of the time, although its ratings and shares were lower than the same period a year ago.

WPIX’s slight dips appear to have benefited WNYW-TV.

The big losers for the 18-34 demographic in the 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. slot were WCBS-TV and WNBC-TV, with news programs that drew 1 ratings in the demo and shares between 4s and 8s.

WPIX’s “Saved By The Bell” and “Charles In Charge” handily defeated market competition between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. while “Full House” keeps up the strength at 6 p.m., beating WNYW-TV’s first airing of “Roseanne.”

However, “Roseanne” is a big performer on WNYW at 6:30, pulling in a 6/19 against WPIX’s “Wonder Years” (4/14) and WWOR-TV’s “Who’s The Boss” (4/15). WABC-TV’s telecast of “Jeopardy” wins the largest share of the 18-34’s at 7 p.m. with a 7/20, which is up from a 6/17 a year ago. WWOR’s “Married with Children” powers to first at 7:30 p.m. winning by a full rating point and a couple of share points.

The 18-34 adults proved a dead heat between WPIX and WNYW for the 10 p.m. news crown, with WWOR third. WNYW and WWOR were each even with their performances of a year ago though WPIX dropped from a 3/8 to a 2/6.

WABC won the 11 p.m. news event, beating its competitors by a rating point and five share points. WNBC was second and WCBS third.

The ratings story changes some when looking at the 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. viewing habits among men 18-49. WPIX still grabs a decent portion of the viewing audiences, although WABC’s news and first-run syndicated fare push to the front as the time gets later. Yet WWOR’s “Married with Children” is the leader at 7:30 p.m. with a 7/18, up from a 5/15 posted by “The Cosby Show” in the time slot a year ago. A 7 p.m. run of “Married” finishes second to “Jeopardy.”

When looking at the 10 p.m. newscasts, the male demographic helps pull WPIX out in front among the indies by a rating point over its nearest competitor, WNYW.

In this same demographic, Gotham’s 11 p.m. news race is a tie in ratings between WABC and WNBC, though two share points separate them.

If the market were decided on the viewing patterns of women 18-49, WABC would be No. 1 between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. as the station’s newscasts beat all other competition in the block, providing for a good lead in to “Jeopardy” and “Wheel of Fortune.” Both “Jeopardy” and “Wheel” dominate their respective time periods between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m.

WPIX and WNYW again tie with their 10 p.m. newscasts when looking at the 18- 49 female demographics, while the 11 p.m. crown rests firmly with WABC.

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