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Piers Morgan Gets New Booker, Gets Ripped By Howard Stern & Ties Larry King’s Ratings

By | Tuesday February 1, 2011 @ 11:48pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

It was an eventful day in Piers Morgan news world. After hitting a ratings and an all-around low for his interview with the Kardashian sisters last week, it became clear that Morgan should be going for better guests. His producers agree, hiring a new booker, 15-year ABC News veteran Katie Thompson who worked primarily with Barbara Walters, including on her 1999 interview with Monica Lewinsky.

Speaking of Barbara Walters and guests on CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight, former guest Howard Stern, who delivered Morgan’s biggest demo ratings to date, took a shot at the British host on his radio show today. “Stop going around bragging like you’re gonna be the next Barbara Walters, or something,” he said. “I like the guy, but he’s gotta really wise up. Dude, you’re in a whole new f**king ballgame … you’re on CNN, in America – welcome to the war.”

Meanwhile, the final ratings for last week are in, and Piers Morgan finished 3rd (978,000 viewers; 279,000 in 25-54) behind leader, Fox News’ Sean Hannity (2.1 million; 525,000), and MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow (1.1 million; 283,000). And with the whole hoopla about “kicking Fox News’ butt”, CNN is pretty much where it was a year ago when Larry King drew almost identical ratings to Morgan in the same 9 PM slot: 989,000 viewers and 290,000 in 25-54.

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CABLE RATINGS: ‘Archer’ & ‘Jersey Shore’ Slightly Down, Piers Morgan Not So Slightly

Nellie Andreeva

The second season premiere of FX’s animated comedy Archer last night drew 1.5 million viewers, 986,000 of them in the adults 18-49 demographic. It was down 16% from the series premiere last year but significantly outperformed its first season average. Interesting footnote: Archer‘s lead-in, a rerun of Two and a Half Men, logged 1 million 18-49 viewers on the day Charlie Sheen made headlines with his hospitalizations following a wild party at his house. That was one of the show’s most watched telecasts on FX ever.

Airing against Archer, MTV’s Jersey Shore finally cooled off, but just a tiny bit. After a series of ratings records, the hit reality series averaged 8.83 million viewers last night, a fraction below the record 8.87 million who tuned in last week. The show kept steady in the 12-34 demo with a 8.8 rating and once again ranked as the second highest-rated program on any network behind Idol.

Meanwhile, CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight sunk to a new low last night, and that’s not only a reference to his choice of Kim and Kourtney Kardashian as guests. Morgan’s interview with the Kardashian sisters drew his smallest audience to date by a wide margin, 498,000. That is well below the 2.1 million he attracted in his debut last Monday and below the 674,000 his predecessor Larry King averaged in 2010. How small was Piers Morgan’s audience? It was … Read More »

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CABLE RATINGS: Record Night For History, SyFy’s ‘Being Human’ Builds, Lawrence O’Donnell Has Solid Debut On MSNBC

Nellie Andreeva

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 drama Being 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 »

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No Ricky Gervais Viewership Bump For Piers Morgan But He Bounces Back In Demo

Nellie Andreeva

Well, with guest Ricky Gervais CNN’s Piers Morgan didn’t quite smackdown Sean Hannity. “If I don’t smack you down tonight with Howard, I’ll take you on Thursday with Ricky Gervais. love Piers,” Morgan tweeted to the Fox News host on Tuesday before his second show with Howard Stern. That night, he edged Hannity in 25-54, which has remained Morgan’s only ratings victory in his premiere week. With newsmaker Ricky Gervais as a guest last night, Morgan averaged 1 million viewers, slightly down from Wednesday night for a new low. He lost both the viewer and demo race to Hannity, drawing about half of what his Fox News competitor got. In 25-54, Morgan bounced back from the low on Wednesday. Morgan also returned to second place in total viewers after falling behind MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow on Wednesday. Here are the rankings for the cable news networks at 9 PM:

Thursday/Day 4 (Ricky Gervias)

FNC’s Hannity: 2,079,000 in P2+ (557,000 in 25-54)

CNN’s Piers: 1,025,000 in P2+ (279,000 in 25-54)

MSNBC’s Maddow: 976,000 in P2+ (264,000 in 25-54) Read More »

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Piers Morgan Falls To Third Place On Day 3

Nellie Andreeva

Piers Morgan started off promisingly as a close No. 2  cable news program at 9PM in its Monday premiere, then fell 40% on Tuesday but still finished second. Last night, Piers Morgan Tonight (1 million total viewers, 239,000 of them in the 25-54 demographic) slipped further to finish behind the time slot leader, Fox News’s Sean Hannity (2 million, 565,000 in 25-54) and MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow (1.1 million, 221,000 in 25-54). In the demo, Morgan edged Maddow to finish second after topping Hannity with the Howard Stern interview on Tuesday. Between his premiere and his third airing, Morgan lost half of his audience (1 million viewers.) Last night, Morgan featured his first non-showbiz guest, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Tonight he is back to entertainment with controversial Golden Globes host Ricky Gervais. Here are the standings at 9 PM for the past 3 nights: Read More »

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Piers Morgan Drops 40% In Viewers On Night 2, Inches Up In The Demo With Howard Stern

Nellie Andreeva

Despite a popular and controversial guest, Howard Stern, the second edition of Piers Morgan’s new talk show on CNN drew 1.27 million viewers, down almost 40% from its Monday premiere. But Stern proved its demo mettle by helping Morgan climb 6% in adults 25-54 (550,719) from the premiere and edge the 9 PM slot leader, Fox’s Sean Hannity (2.2 million, 506,441 in 25-54) in the demo. However, Hannity was in full control among total viewers, beating Morgan almost 2:1. Yesterday, Morgan tweeted to Hannity: “If I don’t smack you down tonight with Howard, I’ll take you on Thursday with Ricky Gervais. love Piers.” He probably will have to wait until Thursday night for the promised full-blown smackdown, though his demo victory last night was impressive. MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow (1.13 million, 264,961 in 25-54) held steady in total viewers and is now running neck-and-neck with Morgan after finishing a distant third on Monday. She slipped in the demo by about 100,000 viewers from Monday.

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Solid Ratings Start For Piers Morgan On CNN: 2.1 Million Viewers Tune In

Nellie Andreeva

In his heavily publicized debut last night, CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight drew 2.1 million viewers, 520,519 of them in the 25-54 demographic. Morgan couldn’t dethrone the reigning king in the 9 PM slot, Fox News’s Sean Hannity (2.4 million, 599,800 in 25-54), who had Sarah Palin on, but crushed MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show (1.1 million, 342,013), which had been Hannity‘s runner-up in the 9 PM hour. Morgan’s premiere, which featured an interview with Oprah Winfrey, came very close to the farewell episode of his predecessor, Larry King, who averaged 2.2 million for the final Larry King Live last month, and is head and shoulders above CNN’s primetime average, including Larry King Live‘s 674,000 viewer average for 2010.

Morgan is getting a great lucky break in his premiere week. A previously scheduled interview with British comedian Ricky Gervais, slated to air on Thursday, has the potential to become a big newsmaking event following Gervais’ much talked about hosting performance at the Golden Globes. Could Gervais do for Morgan what another Brit, Hugh Grant, did for Jay Leno, fueling a ratings upswing? And speaking of noisemakers, Morgan has Howard Stern tonight.

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