November 27, 2008 2:14 PM
On the night before Thanksgiving, NBC’s variety show “Rosie Live” ended the night as one of the lowest-rated programs of the evening, tying ABC’s “Pushing Daisies” for third-place in the hour.
“Rosie” drew a 1.2 rating/4 share in the 18- to 49-year-old demographic and 5 million viewers turned out for the special, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research data.
The holiday-eve ratings make for difficult comparisons because ratings company Nielsen’s households using televisions (or HUT) levels are generally fairly low during this time of year. Nearly every other show on the schedule, as expected, declined significantly week-to-week.
Compared against the rest of the night, “Rosie” tied “Daisies” as the lowest-rated original program for the evening.
But let’s not dwell on numbers. Maybe the critics were kinder. Let’s see what they had to say:
- TV Guide’s Matt Roush: “If the TV variety format weren't already dead, the ghastly ego trip of NBC's Thanksgiving-eve turkey ‘Rosie Live’ would surely have killed it. Like the pie Alec Baldwin predictably pushed into Conan O'Brien's face that fell to the floor without sticking, the entire hour landed with a sickening, sad, ill-conceived thud.”
- The New York Times’ Alessandra Stanley: “Rosie O'Donnell's Wednesday night special on NBC, "Rosie Live," was supposed to be a tribute to the variety shows of the 1970s, but she added a Nixonian twist: Christmas songs, tap-dancing twins and an enemies list. In between skits, celebrity cameos and hokey novelty acts, the legendarily thin-skinned Ms. O'Donnell found time to take potshots at some of her favorite targets, including Donald Trump, Nancy Grace and Bill O'Reilly.”
- The Los Angeles Times’ Mary McNamara: “Rosie, Rosie, what on earth were you thinking? Were you thinking camp? Were you thinking this will be big and brassy and so-over-the-top even the dancing cupcakes will be irresistible? … ‘Rosie Live’ may enter the realm of unsolved mysteries, along with the fate of Amelia Earhart and the design team of the pyramids.”
NBC took fourth for the night with a 1.5/5, as CBS captured the night overall with a 2.9/9. Fox placed second with a 2.2/7, while ABC took third with a 2.0/6. The CW was fifth with a 0.4/1.