Quick Take for Thursday, April 24, 2008 (Fast Affiliate Live + Same Day Ratings)
For the 2nd Year in a Row, ABC Wins the Opening Night of the May Sweep
Among Adults 18-49, Marking its 6th Straight Major Sweep to Open at No. 1
ABC Posts its Best Thursday in 3 Months in Viewers and Key Adults, While Delivering its Highest Ratings on the Night in Nearly 5 Months in Key Women
On its Return, ABC's "Ugly Betty" Earns Second to CBS' "Survivor" in Viewers and
Adults 18-49, and Ranks No. 1 in Women 18-34 for its 13th Regular Original Telecast
The No. 1 TV Program on Thursday in Adults 18-49, "Grey's Anatomy" Dominates its Time Slot and Stands as TV's Top-Rated Scripted Series Telecast in Nearly 3 Months
In its New Slot, "Lost" Beats its Nearest Competition by 67% in Adults 18-49, Jumps from its Most Recent Original with ABC's Best Numbers in the Hour in Nearly a Year
Thursday Night (8:00-11:00 p.m.)
ABC dominated the opening night of the 2008 May Sweep among Adults 18-49 (4.8/13), beating second-place CBS by 20% (4.0/11), third-place NBC by 66% (2.9/11) and fourth-place Fox by 109% (2.3/6). The Network also ranked No. 1 on the night across the other adult demos and with teens: AD25-54 (5.3/13-tie), AD18-34 (4.3/13) and Teens 12-17 (2.3/9). ABC's "Grey's" and "Lost" stood as the Top 2 TV shows of the night among young adults.
� ABC marked its second straight year as the No. 1 network on the first night of the May Sweep in Adults 18-49, while registering its sixth consecutive first-place finish on the opening night of any major sweep in the key sales demographic � No. 1 on the opening nights of Nov. '06, Feb. '07, May '07, Nov. '07, Feb. '08 and May '08.
� ABC posted its strongest Thursday in viewers and across all key adults in 3 months, and marked its highest ratings on the evening in nearly 5 months with all key women � since 1/31/08 and 12/06/07, respectively.
"Ugly Betty" (8:00-9:00 p.m.)
Returning with its first telecast in 3 months (since 1/24/08), ABC's "Ugly Betty" earned second place in the 8 o'clock hour in Total Viewers (8.5 million) and Adults 18-49 (2.5/8) to time period regular CBS' "Survivor: Micronesia." The ABC sophomore series posted a convincing victory in the hour among its core audience of Women 18-34, beating out second-place "Survivor" by a margin of 28% (3.7/11 vs. 2.9/11). In fact it was "Ugly Betty's" 13th straight regular original telecast this season to rank No. 1 in its time slot with Women 18-34.
� The return of "Ugly Betty" generated ABC's top viewer and young adult numbers in the time period in 3 months � since 1/31/08.
"Grey's Anatomy" (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
On its first original airing since early January (1/10/08), ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" returned to dominate the 9 o'clock hour and rank as Thursday's No. 1 television program across each of the key adult demographics: Adults 18-34 (5.9/16), Adults 18-49 (6.3/16) and Adults 25-54 (7.0/16). In its time period, "Grey's" topped CBS' original "C.S.I." by 37% in Adults 18-49 (6.3/16 vs. 4.6/11). "Grey's" marked its 12th consecutive original telecast this season as Thursday's No. 1 TV show in the key young adult sales demographic.
� On it return among Adults 18-49, "Grey's Anatomy" qualified as the highest rated scripted series telecast on TV in nearly 3 months � since Fox's "House" on 2/5/08, which had the added benefit of following "American Idol" on that night.
"Lost" (10:00-11:00 p.m.)
With strong retention of its "Grey's Anatomy" lead-in (87%), ABC's "Lost" overshadowed its new 10 o'clock time period competition, defeating second-place CBS' original time slot regular, "Without a Trace," by 67% in Adults 18-49 (5.5/14 vs. 3.3/9). In fact "Lost" was No. 1 in its time slot in the key young adult sales demographic for the 9th consecutive original telecast this season. "Lost" won the 10:00 p.m. hour in all key adults, men, women and teens.
� In addition to delivering solid retention of its "Grey's" lead-in with key adults, "Lost" actually built on its lead-in across all key men demos (M18-34/M18-49/M25-54). "Lost" stood as Thursday's
No. 1 TV show with Men 18-49 (4.5/13).
� "Lost" was up from its most recent original airing (3/20/08) by 8% in Total Viewers (12.4 million vs. 11.5 million) and by 20% in Adults 18-49 (5.5/14 vs. 4.6/12). In fact the series drew its biggest audience since early March and its top Adult 18-49 rating since late February � since 3/6/08 and 2/21/08, respectively. Furthermore in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49, "Lost's" time period premiere produced ABC's best numbers in the hour in almost a year � since 5/17/07 and 5/3/07, respectively.
A note about increasing DVR penetration and year-to-year rating comparisons: Year-to-year rating trends based on the Live + Same Day data stream may be somewhat distorted by the level of DVR penetration in the Nielsen sample, which has jumped from over 15% at the same point in 2006-07, up to nearly 24% currently. More viewers are watching shows on their own timetables, which may not be reflected in the overnight next day numbers. The only truly valid year-to-year comparison would be one based on the Live + 7 Day metric, once those stats are released by Nielsen.
Source: Nielsen Media Research (Fast Affiliate Live + Same Day Ratings), 4/24/08.