‘Today’ ruins ‘GMA’ day

“Today” capitalized on the Fourth of July week to set off its own fireworks, breaking rival “Good Morning America’s” 34-week-old consecutive win streak in the daypart.

The NBC morning win highlighted Nielsen daytime and fringe ratings for the week of July 5-9, which also saw “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno” and “Nightline” tie in their common half-hour, while CBS’ daytime string continued unabated at 227 straight weekly household wins.

“Today” took the morning crown with a 3.9 rating, 21 share during a week of depressed viewing with Stone Phillips substituting for anchor Bryant Gumbel. “GMA” came in second with a 3.6/19, as the two tied with a 1.5 rating among adults 18-49. “CBS This Morning” delivered a 2.5/12 in households and 0.8 in the key-adult demo.

“Nightline” and “The Tonight Show” each posted a 5.0/14 in the 11:30 p.m. half-hour, with the NBC talkshow drawing a 4.5/13 overall and topping the ABC news magazine in key adult demos.

NBC had fewer highlights to report in daytime, where CBS took the household crown with a 5.9/20 to ABC’s 5.2/17 and a 2.9/10 for NBC. ABC continued to control the battle for women 18-49, the key sales demo, where averages were ABC, 4.2/26; CBS, 3.2/21; NBC, 1.7/11.

ABC edged ahead of the Fox Children’s Network in Saturday morning among children 2-11 with a 4.3 rating to Fox’s 4.1 and a 4.0 for CBS. In households from 8 a.m. to noon, CBS posted a 2.5/11, ABC a 2.4/11 and Fox a 2.3/10.

The Alphabet web had the top two shows among kids, “Bugs Bunny/Tweety” and “Winnie the Pooh,” followed by Fox’s “X-Men” and CBS’ “Garfield & Friends.” NBC premiered the new live-action gameshow “Brains & Brawn,” hosted by “Saved by the Bell’s” Mark-Paul Gosselaar, and posted a 2.0/8, a slight improvement on the time period.

U.S. Senior Open golf on ABC was the top-rated sports program of the July 10- 11 weekend with a 4.6/13 on Sunday, while CBS’ Major League Baseball game drew a solid 4.3/14.

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