[03/07/06 - 12:00 AM]
Primetime Ratings Report for the Week of February 27 - March 5, 2006

[via press release from ABC]

Primetime Ratings Report For the week of February 27 � March 5, 2006

ABC Airs 4 of the Week�s Top 20 Shows in Adults 18-49, as the �Academy Awards� is the Week�s No. 1 TV Program in Viewers and Each Adult Demo

ABC Finishes Out the 2006 February Sweep with Across-the-Board Gains, The Net�s Strongest Performance During Any Sweep Period Since May 2000

For the Fourth Straight Week, ABC News Claims TV�s Top-Rated Newsmagazine Among Adults 18-49

On the Night of �The Bachelor� Finale, ABC Attracts its Largest Non-Sports Monday Audience Since April 2004 and its Top Adult 18-49 Number in 3 Years

Monday from 8-9pm, ABC�s �Wife Swap� Beats the Season Finale of Fox�s �Skating with Celebrities� by 6% in Total Viewers and by 36% in Adults 18-49

Hitting Season Highs Across the Board, the �The Bachelor: Paris� Season Finale Produces the Strongest Numbers for �The Bachelor� Franchise Since May 2004

Wednesday�s No. 1 Scripted Series on All 15 of its Original Telecasts This Season, ABC�s �Lost� Beats its Drama Competition in the 9 O�clock Hour by Wide Margins And Overcomes Fox�s Lead-in Advantage to Dominate the Series Debut of �Free Ride�

On a New Night and Time, the Oscar Edition of �The Barbara Walters Special� Delivers the Annual Show�s Highest Ratings Among Young Women in 4 Years

Dominating Sunday Night, ABC Tops its Combined Network Competition On the Evening by 7.8 Million Viewers and by 40% Among Adults 18-49

ABC�s Red Carpet Show, �Oscar Countdown 2006,� Marks Strong Increases For the Network in the Sunday 7-8pm Hour from Oscar Night Last Year

ABC�s Broadcast of the �78th Annual Academy Awards� Reaches 76.6 Million Viewers Throughout the United States and Ranks as TV�s Most-Watched Entertainment Telecast of the Season

The Jon Stewart-Hosted Oscars Are Up 6% Among Hard-to-Reach Men 18-34

WEEK No. 24:

ABC took second place during the week of February 27, 2006 among Total Viewers (12.6 million) and Adults 18-49 (4.6/12). The Net drew its third-largest weekly audience this season, behind only the weeks of the Super Bowl and the college football bowl games � weeks of 1/30/06 and 1/2/06, respectively.

� The 24th week of the season contained the final three nights (Mon.-Wed.) of the February Sweep. During the 2006 February Sweep ABC delivered across-the-board gains, up by 3.2 million viewers (14.4 million vs. 11.2 million) and by 29% among Adults 18-49 (5.3/13 vs. 4.1/11). The Net won the sweep in Adults 18-49, its second consecutive sweep to hold the No. 1 position after tying CBS for the top spot during November �05. ABC delivered its strongest viewer and young adult numbers in any sweep period since May 2000.

� Season to date ABC is up by 1.1 million viewers (11.6 million vs. 10.5 million) and by 8% in Adults 18-49 (4.2/11 vs. 3.9/10) over the same point a year ago. In fact, ABC is the only network to grow its audience this season on either Nielsen measure.

Rankings: ABC�s Sunday telecast of the �78th Annual Academy Awards� stood as the No. 1 TV program of the week among Total Viewers and across each of the adult demographics (AD18-34/AD18-49/AD25-54). The Net claimed 4 of the week�s Top 20 shows in Adults 18-49: �Academy Awards� � No. 1, �Lost� � No. 6, �Oscar Countdown 2006 PT 2� � No. 11 and �The Bachelor: Paris� � No. 16. For the second consecutive week, ABC News� �Primetime� qualified as TV�s No. 1 newsmagazine in Adults 18-49. It was the fourth straight week that ABC News has claimed TV�s No. 1 newsmagazine in Adults 18-49.


As each of the networks� schedules went back to original series programming, ABC earned second place on Monday night among Adults 18-49 (4.7/11), ahead of third-place Fox by 12% (4.2/10) and fourth-place NBC by 15% (4.1/10). ABC was the dominant network among Adults 18-34 on an evening that included the season premiere of NBC�s �The Apprentice� and the season finale of Fox�s �Skating with Celebrities,� leading its nearest competition (CBS) by 32% (4.5/12 vs. 3.4/9).

� ABC drew its largest non-sports Monday audience (10.8 million) since April 2004 and its top Adult 18-49 number in 3 years � since 4/5/04 and 1/13/03, respectively.

� The Network was up from the same night last February Sweep (2/28/05) by 1.4 million viewers (10.8 million vs. 9.4 million) and by 21% in Adults 18-49 (4.7/11 vs. 3.9/9).

�Wife Swap� (8:00-9:00 p.m.)

In the opening hour of the night, ABC�s �Wife Swap� beat the season finale of Fox�s �Skating with Celebrities� by 6% in Total Viewers (9.3 million vs. 8.8 million) and by 36% in Adults 18-49 (3.8/10 vs. 2.8/7). �Wife Swap� ranked No. 1 in its time period among Women 18-49 (5.0/12) and Women 18-34 (4.8/12).

� The ABC unscripted show grew its overall audience week to week (9.3 million vs. 9.1 million).

�The Bachelor: Paris� (9:00-11:00 p.m.)

In its season finale, ABC�s �The Bachelor: Paris� won its time period and qualified as the No. 1 TV program on Monday night among Adults 18-34 (5.0/13), Women 18-49 (7.2/16) and Women 18-34 (7.4/18). The ABC unscripted series gained audience during each half-hour of its 2-hour telecast, growing by 4.1 million viewers (9.4 million to 13.5 million) and by 53% in Adults 18-49 (4.0/9 to 6.1/15) from beginning to end. During the 10 o�clock hour, �The Bachelor: Paris� came within striking distance of an original episode of �C.S.I.: Miami� among Adults 18-49 (5.8/14 vs. 6.2/15).

� Hitting season highs across the board, �The Bachelor: Paris� attracted the largest audience (11.5 million) and highest Adult 18-49 rating (5.1/12) for �The Bachelor� franchise (any telecast) since May 2004 � since the finale of �The Bachelor� with Jesse on 5/19/04.

� In its finale, �The Bachelor: Paris� offered ABC its largest non-sports audience in the time period in nearly 2 years � since 3/15/04. In addition, it was the Network�s highest Adult 18-49 rating in the time slot with regular non-sports programming in more than 4 years � since 1/28/02.


�George Lopez� (9:30 p.m.)

A special encore of �George Lopez� attracted 8.8 million viewers and a 3.3/8 among Adults 18-49, the sitcom�s best delivery for a repeat telecast in over 2-1/2 years � since 9/17/03.


ABC earned second place among Adults 18-49 (4.3/11) on Wednesday night to Fox, with its expanded edition of �American Idol,� beating third-place CBS by 34% (3.2/9) and fourth-place NBC by 39% (3.1/8).

�George Lopez�/�Freddie� (8:00-9:00 p.m.)

From 8:00�9:00 p.m., opposite Fox�s first hour of �American Idol,� ABC freshman comedy �Freddie� built on its �George Lopez� lead-in among young adults (2.1/5 vs. 2.0/6). Head to head in each half-hour, �George Lopez� and �Freddie� beat their comedy competitors in Adults 18-49, CBS� back-to-back episodes of �Still Standing� (1.8/5 at 8:00 p.m. and 2.0/5 at 8:30 p.m.).

�Lost� (9:00-10:03 p.m.)

Starting against the last 30-minutes of �Idol,� ABC�s �Lost� surged from its lead-in and saw its audience jump in its second half to place a strong second during the 9 o�clock hour. �Lost� defeated its drama competition during the hour, CBS� �Criminal Minds,� by 4.7 million viewers (16.4 million vs. 11.7 million) and by 103% in Adults 18-49 (6.9/16 vs. 3.4/8).

� Growing by 3.3 million viewers (14.6 million to 17.9 million) and by 27% in Adults 18-49 (6.0/14 to 7.6/18) from start to finish, �Lost� overcame Fox�s lead-in advantage to win the 9:30pm half-hour by wide margins. From 9:30-10:00 p.m., �Lost� beat Fox�s series debut of �Free Ride� by 4.3 million viewers (17.9 million vs. 13.6 million) and by 25% in Adults 18-49 (7.6/18 vs. 6.1/15).

� �Lost� stood as the No. 1 scripted show on the evening in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49. The sophomore drama has been the top scripted program on Wednesday in all 15 of its original telecasts this season.

�The Barbara Walters Special� (10:03-11:00 p.m.)

The annual Oscar edition of �The Barbara Walters Special� delivered an average audience of 9.7 million viewers and a 3.7/10 among Adults 18-49. The special won its time period among Women 18-34 (4.2/12).

� Airing on a new night and time (traditionally the program airs on Oscar night), it was the top-rated Oscar edition of �The Barbara Walters Special� in 4 years among Women 18-34 (4.4/12) � since 3/24/02.


With coverage of the �78th Annual Academy Awards,� ABC overshadowed its combined network competition on the evening. During primetime, ABC outdrew the other networks combined by 7.8 million viewers (32.6 million vs. 24.8 million � CBS, NBC, Fox and WB together) and by 40% in Adults 18-49 (11.5/29 vs. 8.2/20 � CBS, NBC, Fox and WB together).

�Oscar Countdown 2006 Parts 1 & 2� (7:00 - 8:00 p.m.)

With the red carpet show, �Oscar Countdown 2006,� ABC drew an average audience of 13.4 million viewers and a 4.3/13 in Adults 18-49 from 7:00-8:00 p.m., ranking a dominant No. 1 in the hour.

� By scheduling the Oscar red carpet show in the 7 o�clock hour this year, ABC improved its performance in the time period by nearly 1 million viewers and by 8% in Adults 18-49 from last year, when it aired the Oscar edition of �The Barbara Walters Special� (12.5 million & 4.0/11 on 2/27/05). �The Barbara Walters Special� aired on the Wednesday prior to the Oscars this year (on 3/1/06).

The �78th Annual Academy Awards� (8:00 - 11:28 p.m.)

ABC�s telecast of the �78th Annual Academy Awards� attracted an average audience of 38.9 million viewers and posted a 13.9 rating, 33 share among Adults 18-49.

� The �78th Annual Academy Awards� reached 76.6 million television viewers across the U.S. � unduplicated viewers watching 6 minutes or more during the 3-1/2 hour telecast.

� Although the films nominated this year in the Best Picture category did not have the box office appeal of recent years, the 2006 Academy Awards (38.9 million) telecast was near the levels of the past two years (2005 = 42.1 million & 2004 = 43.5 million) and up by 5.9 million viewers from the 2003 telecast (2003 = 33.0 million). The Jon Stewart-hosted Oscars were up +6% over last year among hard-to-reach Men 18-34 (10.0/28 vs. 9.4/26).

� TV�s most-watched entertainment telecast of the 2005-06 TV Season, the average audience for ABC�s �78th Annual Academy Awards� (38.9 million) far surpassed other awards shows this season, including the 2005 Emmy Awards (18.6 million), the 2006 Golden Globes (18.8 million) and the 2006 Grammy Awards (17.0 million).

Source: Nielsen Media Research (Live+SD), week of 2/27/06, or as dated.

  [march 2006]  


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