Peacock struts back to top as ‘Truth’ triumphs

NBC’s Thursday-night powerhouse lineup dominated as usual with veteran comedies “Friends,” “The Single Guy” and “Seinfeld” eclipsing or equaling their highest ratings this season.

But first and foremost on the minds of NBC execs was the premiere of “The Naked Truth,” the Tea Leoni comedy the web poached from ABC last spring. It won its timeslot, which, considering its “Seinfeld” lead-in, is no surprise. Its household numbers also were higher than the average of “Suddenly Susan,” the Brooke Shields comedy it replaced. However, “The Naked Truth” retained 83% of the lead-in audience while “Suddenly Susan” had been averaging a 92% retention, according to Nielsen.

For the night, NBC shows were all up and the web averaged a 21.7 rating and 33 share. CBS was second with a 8.5/13, followed by Fox’s 6.4/10 and ABC’s 6.1/9.

“The Naked Truth” averaged a 20.1/30, up from the 15.5/24 the 9:30 slot has averaged for the Peacock web. Its lead-in “Seinfeld” averaged a 24.4/36, its season high. “Friends” led off the night for the web equaling its season high of 19.4/29. “ER” averaged a 24.4/39.

On the demo front, NBC said “The Naked Truth’s” 16.0/37 in adults 18-49 was the web’s best for a series premiere since “A Different World” in 1987. “Seinfeld”(19.9/44) also earned its best 18-49 numbers in almost two years.

Last year, “The Naked Truth’s” ABC debut averaged a 12.7/20 in households and its series average was an 11.4/18.

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