TV Article

The Ratings

ABC, which has been riding a wave of critical and popular support for Twin Peaks, may have twin flops with two other spring series: Capital News and Sunset Beat. News started slowly in the Nielsens with a two-hour premiere April 9 and is sinking fast; fewer than 12 million viewers returned for episode two. Apparently viewers care even less for the motorcycle cops of Sunset Beat; its premiere finished 78th for the week, drawing fewer than 10 million viewers.

Many of NBC's spring series are still close calls. The comedy Wings had a strong debut after Cheers April 19, attracting 28 million viewers to finish seventh — but it must keep them coming back and outrate the time period's previous occupant, Grand, to earn a place on next fall's schedule. The first episodes of Working Girl and Shannon's Deal drew middling ratings and will need good word-of-mouth to survive. And after a long hiatus, a revamped Hardball began its run April 20 and ranked 42nd, about where it was last fall.

TOP FIVE
In millions of viewers
1. America's Funniest Home Videos ABC, 38.1
2. America's Funniest Home Videos (2nd episode) ABC, 36.5
3. Cheers NBC, 32.9
4. The Cosby Show NBC, 32.4
5. A Different World NBC, 32.1

BOTTOM FIVE
86. True Blue NBC, 6.9
87. Booker Fox, 6.4
88. AFI Salute to David Lean ABC, 6.0
89. The Tracey Ullman Show Fox, 5.8
90. The Outsiders Fox, 5.3

Originally posted May 04, 1990 Published in issue #12 May 04, 1990 Order article reprints
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