Viewers Appear to Agree with Critics, as ‘Parker Spitzer’ Debut Ratings Lag Rivals on Fox News, MSNBC and HLN

Oct 6, 2010  •  Post A Comment

"Parker Spitzer" may not be the ratings powerhouse that CNN hoped, after its debut failed to impress viewers, reports our friend Bill Carter in the New York Times’ Media Decoder blog.

The program drew only 454,000 total viewers, far below its rivals on Fox News (Bill O’Reilly with 3.1 million viewers) and MSNBC (Keith Olbermann with 1.1 million viewers), the story says. In fact, "Parker Spitzer," with hosts conservative columnist Kathleen Parker and former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, even underperformed Nancy Grace on the HLN channel, which drew 468,000 viewers, the article points out.

As previously reported, the high-profile premiere was described as "unbearable" and "icky" by various critics.

Furthermore, Carter writes, "Even worse for the new CNN program, it lost viewers from the show on just ahead of it, ‘John King USA,’ which had 471,000 viewers. Perhaps more troubling for CNN, ‘Parker Spitzer’ was down sharply from the show it replaced, ‘Rick’s List,’ hosted by Rick Sanchez, who was recently ousted from CNN. And it even fell short of the show that had long occupied the 8 p.m. slot on CNN, with Campbell Brown."

The story says that a representative for CNN said that the network was happy with the new program and that the show had added viewers between 25 to 54 years old. Carter points out that "Parker Spitzer" added 17,000 viewers in that demographic.

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