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October 23, 2008

World Series rules Wednesday; CBS comedies rise

83391540 Fox led Wednesday night with Game 1 of the World Series, though the match was down in the ratings from last year.

The Philadelphia at Tampa Bay (14.6 million, 4.8 rating, adults 18-49) game gave Fox its highest-rated Wednesday since the "American Idol" finale last May. Yet the game was off 17% in the adult demo, and 14% among total viewers, from last year's first Rockies vs. Red Sox meet.

With the Phillies winning Game 1, Fox Sports notes it becomes more likely the Series will extend beyond four games. Only once in the last 40 years has the visiting team won Game 1 and gone on to sweep the Series.

Among entertainment programming Wednesday night, two shows given full-season pickups earlier this week tilted different directions, while CBS' comedy block reached new heights.

CBS placed second for the evening in the demo, its modestly rated 8 p.m. comedy block, "The New Adventures of Old Christine" (8 million, 2.4/7) and "Gary Unmarried" (7.8 million, 2.5/7) hitting season highs. "Unmarried" has yet to receive a network vote of confidence with an order for additional scripts or a full season pickup, but expect one or the other soon. "Criminal Minds" (14.7 million, 4.0/10) slid down 7% and "CSI: NY" (14.2 million, 3.9/10) dropped 9% from most-recent airings, but both shows won their respective hours. (Also, keep in mind last week the presidential debate aired on ABC, NBC and CBS from 9-11 p.m., so many shows skipped a week.)

In third, ABC's "Pushing Daisies" (5.7 million, 1.9/5) and "Dirty Sexy Money" (5.9 million, 2.0/5) were frozen in the ratings. But newly picked up "Private Practice" (7.8 million, 3.0/7) at 9 p.m.was up 15% from its last original despite missing a beat last week.

Next Wednesday, ABC's competitors air the Barack Obama ad at 8 p.m., and it's still unclear if ABC intends to air a "Daisies" original in the slot, take the $1 million for the ad, or run something else entirely. (Doesn't seem like a difficult decision, does it?).

In fourth place, NBC had its worst Wednesday since before the Olympics. "Knight Rider" (7.2 million, 2.1/6), like "Practice" given a leap-of-faith full-season pickup, fell a couple tenths to a season low. "Deal or No Deal" (7.6 million, 1.9/5) made its time-period debut at 9 p.m. Then "Lipstick Jungle" (4.2 million, 1.6/4) fell to a season low. All the shows placed last among major network competitors in the hours.

On the CW, "America's Next Top Model" (4.4 million, 2.1/6) matched its season high and beat "Daisies" at 8 p.m. But the premiere of "Stylista" was weak (2.5 million, 1.2/3) -- only slightly better than the debut of "Crowned" last year.

UPDATE: That was fast. CBS will give "Gary" a shot in Monday night's choice "Worst Week" slot.

WEDNESDAY Oct. 22, 2008







2.3/6 Pushing Daisies
5.7 mil, 1.9/5
Private Practice
7.8 mil, 3.0/7
Dirty Sexy Money
5.9 mil, 2.0/5
3.4/9 New Adventures of Old Christine
8.1 mil, 2.4/7
Gary Unmarried
7.8 mil, 2.5/7
Criminal Minds
14.7 mil, 4.0/10
14.2 mil, 3.9/10
1.9/5 Knight Rider
7.2 mil, 2.1/6
Deal Or No Deal
7.6 mil, 1.9/5
Lipstick Jungle
4.2 mil, 1.6/4
4.8/11 World Series Game 1
14.6 mil, 4.8 rating
No programming
1.6/4 America's Top Model
4.4 mil, 2.1/6
2.5 mil, 1.2/3
No programming


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