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Saturday, May 17, 2008

How does the average US citizen look?

Do you want to know how the average US citizen is?
Consider what he watches:

Highest rated network telecasts:

Elvis Presley's first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show and the "Lucy Goes to the Hospital" episode of I Love Lucy hold the record as the highest rated telecasts of all time.


1 The Ed Sullivan Show: Elvis Presley's first appearance 60 million 82.6% September 9, 1956 CBS
1 I Love Lucy episode: "Lucy Goes to the Hospital" 44 million 71.7% January 19, 1953 CBS


Top 45 network primetime telecasts of all time (1964-Present)
(from January 1964 to February 2008; ranked by rating, or "Percentage of Households." Households could include many viewers; share is the percentage of television sets in use tuned to a specific program; source: Nielsen Media Research and Variety)

Few post-1990 telecasts are listed. With the ubiquity of cable and satellite television, typical American households have a far greater choice of programming: dozens of specialty and broadcast channels, as opposed to the handful of broadcast channels during the era represented by most programs on this list. More recently, the Internet has also drawn viewers away from television. Future programs with viewership levels (in terms of percentage of TV households) that rank high on this list are probably unlikely to exist in the foreseeable future except for a Super Bowl.


1 M*A*S*H series finale: "Goodbye, Farewell and Amen" 50.15 million 60.2% 77% February 28, 1983 CBS
2 Dallas episode: "Who Done It?" aka "Who Shot J.R.?" 41.47 million 53.3% 76% November 21, 1980 CBS
3 Roots Part VIII (finale) 36.38 million 51.1% 71% January 30, 1977 ABC
4 Super Bowl XVI (San Francisco 49ers vs. Cincinnati Bengals) 40.02 million 49.1% 73% January 24, 1982 CBS
5 Super Bowl XVII (Washington Redskins vs. Miami Dolphins) 40.48 million 48.6% 69% January 30, 1983 NBC
6 XVII Winter Olympics: Ladies' figure skating - short program
featuring Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding 45.69 million 48.5% 64% February 23, 1994 CBS
7 Super Bowl XX (Chicago Bears vs. New England Patriots) 41.49 million 48.3% 70% January 26, 1986 NBC
8 Gone with the Wind telecast (part 1) 33.96 million 47.7% 65% November 7, 1976 NBC
9 Gone with the Wind telecast (part 2) 33.75 million 47.4% 64% November 8, 1976 NBC
10 Super Bowl XII (Dallas Cowboys vs. Denver Broncos) 34.41 million 47.2% 67% January 15, 1978 CBS
11 Super Bowl XIII (Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Dallas Cowboys) 35.09 million 47.1% 74% January 21, 1979 NBC
12 Bob Hope Christmas Special 27.26 million 46.6% 64% January 15, 1970 NBC
13 Super Bowl XVIII (L.A. Raiders vs. Washington Redskins) 38.88 million 46.4% 71% January 22, 1984 CBS
14 Super Bowl XIX (San Francisco 49ers vs. Miami Dolphins) 39.39 million 46.4% 63% January 20, 1985 ABC
15 Super Bowl XIV (Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Los Angeles Rams) 35.33 million 46.3% 67% January 20, 1980 CBS
16 Super Bowl XXX (Dallas Cowboys vs. Pittsburgh Steelers) 44.15 million 46.0% 68% January 28, 1996 NBC
17 Film: The Day After 38.55 million 46.0% 62% November 20, 1983 ABC
18 Roots Part VI 32.68 million 45.9% 66% January 28, 1977 ABC
18 The Fugitive series finale: "The Judgement: Part 2" 25.70 million 45.9% 72% August 29, 1967 ABC
20 Super Bowl XXI (New York Giants vs. Denver Broncos) 40.03 million 45.8% 66% January 25, 1987 CBS
21 Roots Part V 32.54 million 45.7% 71% January 27, 1977 ABC
22 Super Bowl XXVIII (Dallas Cowboys vs. Buffalo Bills) 42.86 million 45.5% 66% January 30, 1994 NBC
22 Cheers series finale: "One For The Road" 42.36 million 45.5% 64% May 20, 1993 NBC
24 The Ed Sullivan Show: Beatles' first appearance 23.24 million 45.3% 60% February 9, 1964 CBS
25 Super Bowl XXVII (Dallas Cowboys vs. Buffalo Bills) 41.99 million 45.1% 66% January 31, 1993 NBC
26 Bob Hope Christmas Show 27.05 million 45.0% 61% January 14, 1971 NBC
27 Roots Part III 31.90 million 44.8% 68% January 25, 1977 ABC
28 Super Bowl XXXII (Denver Broncos vs. Green Bay Packers) 43.63 million 44.5% 67% January 25, 1998 NBC
29 Super Bowl XI (Oakland Raiders vs. Minnesota Vikings) 31.61 million 44.4% 73% January 9, 1977 NBC
30 Super Bowl XV (Oakland Raiders vs. Philadelphia Eagles) 34.54 million 44.4% 63% January 25, 1981 NBC
31 Super Bowl VI (Dallas Cowboys vs. Miami Dolphins) 27.45 million 44.2% 74% January 16, 1972 CBS
32 XVII Winter Olympics: Ladies' figure skating - long program
featuring Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding 41.54 million 44.1% 62% February 25, 1994 CBS
33 Roots Part II 31.40 million 44.1% 62% January 24, 1977 ABC
34 Beverly Hillbillies: "The Giant Jackrabbit" 22.57 million 44.0% 65% January 8, 1964 CBS
35 Roots Part IV 31.19 million 43.8% 66% January 26, 1977 ABC
35 The Ed Sullivan Show: Beatles' second appearance 22.445 million 43.8% 60% February 16, 1964 CBS
37 Super Bowl XXIII (Cincinnati Bengals vs. San Francisco 49ers) 39.32 million 43.5% 68% January 22, 1989 NBC
38 42nd Academy Awards 25.39 million 43.4% 78% April 7, 1970 ABC
39 Super Bowl XXXIV (St. Louis Rams vs. Tennessee Titans) 43.62 million 43.3% 63% January 30, 2000 ABC
39 Super Bowl XXXI (New England Patriots vs. Green Bay Packers) 42.00 million 43.3% 65% January 26, 1997 FOX
41 The Thorn Birds Part III 35.99 million 43.2% 62% March 29, 1983 ABC
42 Super Bowl XLII (New York Giants vs. New England Patriots) 48.66 million 43.1% 65% February 3, 2008 FOX
42 The Thorn Birds Part IV 35.90 million 43.1% 62% March 30, 1983 ABC
44 1981 NFC Championship Game
(Dallas Cowboys at San Francisco 49ers) 34.96 million 42.9% 62% January 10, 1982 CBS
45 Beverly Hillbillies: "The Girl from Home" 21.96 million 42.8% 62% January 15, 1964 CBS

Taken by Wikipedia
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