Baseball game misses tag, lowest rated in history

NEW YORK — Fox’s “Mad TV” delivered its highest season premiere numbers since its 1995 series bow, with a 3.0 rating/11 share in the key adults 18-49 demo and 6.2 million total viewers, according to Nielsen data.

The Oct. 7 preem outdelivered the show’s previous-season average by 15% in both total viewers and adults 18-49. Among teens, “Mad TV” out-rated the premiere of NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” by 90% (4.0/19 vs. 2.1/13).

“SNL” was, however, disadvantaged by its weak baseball lead-in, the lowest-rated primetime playoff game in history, which ran until nearly midnight in the East. Compared with last year’s season premiere, “SNL” was down 18% among adults 18-49 (to 4.1/19) and 20% in total viewers (7.1 million).

Letterman up

CBS’ “Late Show With David Letterman” also got off to a strong start this season, with year-to-year gains in households and viewers.

For the week ended Oct. 6, “Late Show” posted a 3.4/10 in households, with an average of 4.46 million viewers. That’s up 3% in households and 9% in viewers from the same week last year, according to Nielsen numbers.

Meanwhile, NBC’s “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno” was down 13% in households (3.9/12 from 4.5/13) and 11% in viewers (5.06 million from 5.70 million), compared with the same week last year. (Due to baseball playoffs, “Tonight” was delayed Tuesday and Friday last week).

On the heels of a two-year pickup from ABC, “Politically Incorrect With Bill Maher” earned its best weekly delivery in five months, with an average audience of 2.90 million viewers. Compared with the same week last year, “PI” was up 19% in viewers (2.90 million vs. 2.43 million), up 17% in adults 18-49 (1.48 million vs. 1.27 million) and up 20% among adults 25-54 (1.62 million vs. 1.35 million).

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