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Ratings Chart Attack! is the TV industry’s destination for a daily dose of prime-time ratings. Delivering the daily scoop on which shows are scoring. TVWeek’s Sergio Ibarra calls the winners and losers, and what it means to broadcast network programmers. From day-in, day-out ratings to long-view trends and noteworthy performances, Ratings Chart Attack! delivers.

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‘Housewives’ Return to Record Low on ABC

April 14, 2008 1:32 PM

Desperate Housewives

ABC’s strategy for reintroducing “Desperate Housewives” after the writers strike ended up backfiring, bringing the show its worst performance for an original to date. In the process, “Oprah’s Big Give” lost ground after being shuffled earlier on the schedule.

“Big Give” moved to 8 p.m. yesterday, landing a 2.9 rating/8 share in 18-49 year olds according to Nielsen preliminary numbers. That would be its lowest rating to-date.

“Housewives,” coupled with a lower than usual lead-in from “Big Give,” pulled down a 5.7/13.

That would be “Housewives” worst original performance to date, as well.

Who prospered? ABC’s special “Eli Stone” jumped 61 percent over its Thursday showing with a (2.9/7). “America’s Funniest Home Videos” led off the night with a 2.4/7, flat from last week. ABC finished first with a 3.5/9.

CBS (2.7/7) posted marked improvement on its Sunday slate, with a 23% increase from “Big Brother” (2.7/7), a 14% jump from “Dexter” (2.4/6), and a 129% bump from “60 Minutes” (3.2/10). “Cold Case” (2.5/6) was down slightly.

Mostly animation repeats, a new “Simpsons” (3.3/9) and “King of the Hill” (2.8/7) helped Fox remain even with a 2.4/6.

USA’s top shows, “Monk” (1.1/3) and “Psych” (1.2/3), continue to languish on NBC (1.3/3). “Monk” dipped 27% from last week, while “Psych” dropped 8%. “Dateline” (1.3/4) was near even, and a “Law & Order: SVU” repeat capped the night.

The CW (0.5/1) stayed essentially flat from last week, with repeats and new showings of “Everybody Hates Chris” (0.5/1) and “The Game” (0.6/1).

On Friday, NBC’s broadcast of “Miss USA 2008” didn’t help the network’s overall rating (1.5/5). The pageant posted a record low, 1.7/5, down 23% from last year. It was the worst performance from the event in at least 17 years. NBC’s “Amnesia” finished its run yesterday with a 1.0/3, down 23% from last week.

ABC’s “Duel” continued to dud with disappointing ratings, tying last week’s season opening 1.1/3. “20/20” bounced back from the low lead-in with a 2.2/6. ABC ended the night with a 1.6/5.
CBS ended up winning the night with a 2.3/7, thanks to new episodes of “Ghost Whisperer” (2.5/9), “The Price is Right Primetime” (2.1/6) and “Numb3rs” (2.3/7), all essentially flat from last week.

The CW placed fourth with “Friday Night Smackdown!” (1.4/4), down slightly.

“Canterbury’s Law” (1.2/4) on Fox (1.2/4) dropped 14% from last week.

No surprises on Saturday as Fox’s sports coverage nabbed the night. The Subway Fresh Fit 500 started late due to rain, but was the top program with a 2.5/8. Thanks to live programming, expect to see that change once final official numbers arrive.

Fox was first with a 2.4/8. NBC (1.3/4) was second with “Law & Order” stable repeats. ABC and CBS tied for third with a 1.1/3.

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