NBC Wins Debate Night Ratings

Oct 16, 2008  •  Post A Comment

Wednesday night’s third and final presidential debate edged out Major League Baseball playoff action, according to Nielsen Media preliminary numbers.
NBC won the night with a 3.2 rating/8 share among viewers 18-49, led by its presidential debate coverage, which averaged a 3.9 rating/9 share from 9-10:30 p.m. The network’s post-debate analysis also fared better than ABC and CBS, scoring a 2.9 rating/7 share. From 8-9 p.m. a new episode of “Knight Rider” (2.4/7) was up 9% from last week.
ABC came in second for the night (2.5/6), as did its debate coverage (2.9/7 for debate, 2.3/6 for analysis). Leading off the night was a new episode of “Pushing Daisies” (1.9/6), which remained flat from last week.
CBS rounded off the big three broadcast networks with its debate (2.7/6) and analysis (2.1/5) coverage. From 8-9 p.m. a new episode of “The New Adventures of Old Christine” (2.1/6) remained flat while a new episode of “Gary Unmarried” (2.4/7) increased one-tenth of a rating point.
CBS tied for third for the night with Fox, both averaging a 2.4 rating/6 share.
Fox was the only major broadcast network to skip out on debate coverage, instead airing MLB coverage of the National League Championship Series between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Game five of the series averaged a 2.4 rating/6 share between 8:30 and 11 p.m. (The game ran from 8:22-11:30 p.m.) At 8 p.m. pregame coverage averaged a 2.1 rating/6 share.
The CW rounded off the night with a 1.1 rating/3 share, with a new “America’s Next Top Model” (1.5/4) earning a 1.7 rating/5 share among adults ages 18-34, down 19% in the demographic. A “90210” rerun scored a 0.8 rating/2 share among viewers ages 18-49 and ages 18-34. For the night the network averaged a 1.2 rating/4 share among viewers 18-34.
Time-adjusted final numbers will be released later Thursday.

One Comment

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