With the Olympics over, relative normalcy returned to daytime and fringe ratings during the Feb. 28-March 4 week, though CBS seemed to be experiencing a mild, pleasant Olympic hangover.
‘Late Show’ best
“Late Show With David Letterman” (a 6.4 rating/20 share) had its best week, excluding the Olympics, since its premiere, while “CBS This Morning”– put on hold for two weeks to make room for the slot-winning Olympic program — slid back to third place, but improved on its relative performance in the daypart.
“The Tonight Show With Jay Leno” had a 4.3/13 for the week and edged “Nightline” (4.7/13) in the 11:30 p.m. half-hour.
NBC’s other latenight fare closed sweeps on a stronger note — aided by Letterman. “Late Night With Conan O’Brien” (2.1/10) had its highest rating since premiere week thanks to an appearance by the CBS host, while “Later With Greg Kinnear” averaged a 1.2/8 in its first week, up from the 1.0/7 Bob Costas averaged through the first quarter.
CBS also began its sixth year as the top-rated daytime network, winning its 261st consecutive week with an average 6.5/23, followed by ABC (4.8/17) and NBC (3.1/11). ABC did edge the Eye web in the key women 18-49 demographic, with a 3. 9 rating to CBS’ 3.8. NBC delivered a 2.2 in that demo.
The reverse was true among the breakfastcasts, where “Good Morning America” ( 4.6/19) held the household lead while trailing “Today” (4.4/18) in all key demos. “CBS This Morning” posted a 3.7/15, improving on its first-quarter average.
Fox grabs kids
The Saturday-morning race remained no contest, as Fox Children’s Network crossed the finish line with a 7 rating among kids 2-11 and 3.7/14 overall, compared to a 5 and 2.7/10, respectively, for ABC during the four hours Fox programs.
CBS averaged a 3.6 rating with kids and 2.3/9 overall, experiencing West Coast preemptions due to NCAA basketball. Fox’s “Bobby’s World” was the top-rated program among kids. NBA basketball topped the lackluster weekend sports scene, as NBC averaged roughly a 4.1/12 for its Saturday doubleheader.