UPDATED with ratings: About 149,000 of those 809,000 viewers who watched Lawrence O’Donnell’s emotional return to MSNBC fell in the news demo. His numbers were up 11% over the network’s June-to-date in the demo and 39% over MSNB’s June to date in total viewers.
In his return, O’Donnell described the taxi accident in which he and his brother were injured. He also talked about David Koch, who’d given large sums of money to the hospital at which O’Donnell was treated. In April, MSNBC said O’Donnell would be off the air for several weeks while he recovered from the crash, which happened while he vacationing out of the country.
His Last Word comeback beat CNN Tonight at 10 PM. But he got pounded by FNC’s Hannity, which virtually doubled O’Donnell’s return in overall audience (1.562 million viewers) and nearly quadrupled him in demo viewers (400,000 demo viewers).
The Last Word host Lawrence O’Donnell will be off the air as he recovers from a weekend car accident. MSNBC confirmed the news today in a statement: “Lawrence O’Donnell and his brother Michael were injured in a taxi accident on Saturday while vacationing out of the country. They were transported back to the US — Lawrence to NYC and Michael to Boston. They are both under the care of doctors and expected to make a full recovery. Lawrence will be off from MSNBC for several weeks as he recuperates. Our thoughts and support are with the O’Donnell family and we look forward to having Lawrence back on the air soon.” No word on their specific injuries. MSNBC says Alex Wagner is expected to fillv in for O’Donnell during the 10 PM ET time slot Monday and Tuesday of this week with Ari Melber taking Wednesday and Thursday.
Fueled by coverage of the secret Mitt Romney tape, The Rachel Maddow Show at 9 PM ET pulled in the top ratings among adults 25-54 for the week of September 17, besting Fox News Channel’s Hannity for the first time since January 19, 2009. Maddow was No. 1 with 567,000 and Hannity was second with 500,000. CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight placed third with 198,000. The Last Word With Lawrence O’Donnell (Monday – Thursday) at 10 PM also came in at No. 1 for the week with 508,000. FNC’s On the Record w/ Greta Van Susteren was second with 427,000 and CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 was third with 224,000. This was the best week ever for The Last Word and the best delivery in the time period since week of November 3, 2008, according to MSNBC. Read More »
It was two nights to remember for MSNBC, which beat cable news networks’ 800-pound gorilla Fox News Channel among adults 25-54 in primetime on Monday and Tuesday. The surge, fueled by coverage of the secret Mitt Romney tape, peaked on Tuesday, when MSNBC topped Fox News 575,000-526,000 in 25-54 primetime viewers. MSNBC claimed the top program in the demo for the night, Rachel Maddow, which drew a massive 703,000 25-54 viewers, topping perennial victor Bill O’Reilly (682,000), who had Jon Stewart as a guest that night. By Wednesday, the standings went back to they way they have been for years, with Fox News besting MSNBC in the demo (578,000-500,000) and O’Reilly back at No. 1. (In total viewers, Fox News has been consistently the top finisher.)
On the heels of winning the ratings race on Night 1 of the Democratic National Convention, the two-night winning streak this week is sure to give MSNBC a boost of confidence. It showcased the network’s winning combo of Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell. The media focus has been largely on Maddow because of her virtually unprecedented nightly win Tuesday with a ratings high for 2012. But O’Donnell has had a great week too. Boosted by the big lead-in from Maddow, O’Donnell on Tuesday posted all-time highs in total viewers (1.74 million) and all key demos, including 24-54 (535,000).
A month shy of his one-year anniversary at CNN, Piers Morgan just posted his lowest-rated month to date in the key adults 25-54 demographic. His Piers Morgan Tonight averaged 154,000 viewers in the demo in November. That was down 4% from the delivery of his predecessor Larry King in the 9 PM slot last November. Meanwhile, in his first full month at 8 PM, MSNBC’s Ed Schultz drew 201,000 in 25-54. That was better than the 176,000 demo viewers Lawrence O’Donnell delivered in the slot in October. But it was down 35% from the performance of Keith Olbermann in the 8 PM hour last November. (O’Donnell too was down 35% from Olbermann’s October 2010 average.) Overall, Fox News once again led the cable news network pack in November with 258,000 viewers among adults 25-54, followed by MSNBC (138,000) and CNN (121,000).
September seemed to smile on Anderson Cooper. CNN says that its prime time ratings for the month are up 46% (to 253,000) in its target 25-54 demo, and 34% (to 769,000) in total viewers, vs. the same time last year. And a big part of that is due to Anderson Cooper 360: In the competition with Fox News and MSNBC, CNN says that AC 360 was the only 8 PM ET news show whose audience grew. It was up 36% in the demo (212,000), while MSNBC’s The Last Word fell 35% (185,000) and Fox’s O’Reilly Factor was off 14% (611,000). For full-day ratings, CNN says it’s up 16% in total viewers (450,000) and 25% in its demo (148,000). By contrast, MSNBC was up 4% in total viewers (412,000) and 2% in the demo (143,000), while Fox was up 2% in viewers (1.06M) and down 3% in the demo (264,000).
Meanwhile Cooper’s syndicated daytime talk show for Warner Bros TV, Anderson, is off to a promising start. It averaged a 1.3 rating a 4 share in its second week, up 30% and 33%, respectively, compared with Week 1. The numbers are better for his target of women 25-54: His share in that demo was up 50% in major markets including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and San Francisco.
Diane Haithman is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.
MSNBC Announces Multi-Year Contract With Rachel Maddow MSNBC president Phil Griffin, appearing on the cable news network’s Tuesday panel at TCA alongside hosts Rachel Maddow, Lawrence O’Donnell and Chris Matthews, said the door is still open to “Young Turk” Cenk Uygur, who abruptly left the network July 20. Griffin said he was surprised by the departure, although he does not feel that the host worked in the 6 PM time slot. “We wanted Cenk to stay at MSNBC; he fits our sensibility,” he said. “I don’t think all good people are going to succeed at 6 o’clock. We were working on a new contract to have him on the weekends; I was disappointed that he didn’t stay and hope we will work out that he comes back. … I have nothing bad to say about him. He was terrific.” Griffin said no decision has been made about putting Al Sharpton in Uygur’s former slot but that the civil rights leader “fits into MSNBC.” Read More »
Diane Haithman is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.
Tuesday morning’s MSNBC panel at the TCA began with the news that Rachel Maddow, host of The Rachel Maddow Show, has signed a multi-year contract continue doing her show for MSNBC. The openly gay host — who said that growing up as a lesbian in San Francisco during the AIDS crisis whetted her interest in public policy because policy decisions either saved people’s lives or killed them — declined to specify the length of the contract, but described it as “multi-year” and said after the session that it did not include any changes in her role at MSNBC but just called for her to “do what I do for more years.”
With so much attention focused on MTV’s phenomenon Jersey Shore and BET’s The Game, History’s less noisy series Pawn Stars and American Pickers often get overlooked. But last week, they ranked No.4, 5 and 6 behind Jersey Shore and The Game among all cable series in total viewers. And last night, they broke rating records for History with some staggering numbers. The 10:30 PM episode of Pawn Stars drew 7 million viewers, 3.7 million of them in the 18-49 demo, a series high and History’s most watched telecast ever. The 10 PM episode of Pawn Stars was close behind (6.7 million, 3.4 million in 18-49) At 9 PM, American Pickers drew 6.2 million viewers, 2.6 million in 18-49. The 3 programs ranked as cable’s No.1, 2 and 3 shows last night in all key metrics.
Meanwhile, there was good news for Syfy’s new original dramaBeing Human. While fellow British drama remake Skins on MTV took a dive in its second outing last night, Being Human actually grew in its second airing last night: by 9% in total viewers to 2.14 million and by 21% in Adults 18-49 to 1.21 million. Being Human is now tracking as Syfy’s most successful scripted winter series launch since Battlestar Galactica in 2005. Read More »
On his first show in the 8 PM time slot on MSNBC previously occupied by Keith Olbermann, Lawrence O’Donnell last night talked about what Olbermann’s tenure meant for the channel and for him personally. “I know that I now occupy a platform built for me by Keith Olbermann,” he said. “Had he not built this show and welcomed me to it, I would be at home tonight watching, I don’t know, the Real Housewives of somewhere.” Here is the video: