HBO has discovered that rating and Cher go together.
The pop diva’s aggressively promoted comeback concert Sunday night belted out a rousing 3.9 rating/6 share in households nationally and a 13.0/18 in HBO’s 30 million homes, making it the week’s highest-rated cable program when ranked according to that HBO-homes result.
With HBO available in just 30% of the country’s TV households, though, the concert’s national results were somewhat smaller. Still, “Cher Live in Concert at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas” earned cable’s third-highest national rating for the week, edged out only by a pair of USA Network wrestling shows that were available in more than twice as many homes.
In adults 18-49, “Cher” attracted a 3.1/8 nationally and a 9.0/20 in HBO homes, both number one for the week in cable. Nationally, the concert virtually equalled Sunday’s slot competitors on NBC (3.2/8) and CBS (3.1/8), which were available in more than three times as many homes.
And “Cher” did it against the toughest Sunday competition the nets have posed all summer, including ABC’s top-rated “Millionaire” and Fox’s highest-scoring NFL preseason football telecast ever.
The second-highest-rated pay-cablecast of the Aug. 23-29 week was HBO’s “Sex in the City” (3.0/5 in homes nationally, 9.9/14 in HBO homes), which enjoyed a big ratings boost from its “Cher” lead-in.