Everything really did come up roses for CBS in the metered markets Sunday, as the web’s three-hour telecast of “Gypsy” belted out some big Nielsen numbers.
“E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial” proved no match for the burlesque show, as NBC’s first telecast of the theatrical blockbuster — aired the past two years Thanksgiving night on CBSactually ran third in the overnights, behind ABC’s repeat of “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.”
“Gypsy” averaged roughly a 19 rating, 28 share from 8-11 p.m., compared to a 10/15 for the 2 1/2-hour “E.T.””Christmas Vacation” delivered a very solid 14.4/ 21. “E.T.” may have suffered somewhat from its low-rated “The Jetsons” movie lead-in.
Despite the household numbers — which would place “Gypsy” third, behind “To Dance With the White Dog” and “A Walton Thanksgiving Reunion,” among CBS Sunday movies if they hold up nationally — CBS will doubtless be curious to see what sort of demographics the Bette Midler showcase reached in terms of its appeal to younger groups.
The Eye network also had reason to feel a bit swell Friday, as an NBC special helped allow CBS’ “Picket Fences” (10.4/18) to score its highest rating of the season for the second consecutive week. ABC’s “20/20” (15.7/28) nevertheless won the hour.