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Gorbachev Is No Match for Raiders in Battle for Ratings

December 02, 1987|JAY SHARBUTT | Times Staff Writer

NEW YORK — Although exclusive and a major news story, the interview of Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev by NBC anchor Tom Brokaw proved no ratings match for pro football, stunt men or sitcoms, preliminary ratings showed Tuesday.

According to 15-city overnight estimates provided by NBC, Monday night's broadcast of the taped, hourlong interview with Gorbachev ran a distant third to ABC and CBS programs, averaging a 9.1 rating and attracting 14% of the audience watching TV at that time.

Save in the Pacific Time Zone, ABC's competition during the first hour of prime time Monday night featured a special on the late stunt man Dar Robinson, which averaged an 18.9 rating and 28% of the audience in the 15-city ratings from the A. C. Nielsen Co.

CBS' fare--"Kate & Allie" and "Frank's Place"--together averaged a 16.6 rating and 24% of the audience in the A. C. Nielsen Co. estimate.

In Los Angeles, the L.A. Raiders-Seattle Seahawks football game on KABC-TV Channel 7 competed with the Gorbachev interview on KNBC Channel 4 and easily won the 8-9 p.m. time period, getting a 26.9 rating and 38% of the audience.

The Gorbachev interview averaged an 8.1 rating and 11% of the viewers in Los Angeles, while "Kate & Allie" and "Frank's Place" on KCBS-TV Channel 2 averaged a 13.5 rating and 19% of the audience.

National ratings for Monday were not available at press time. George Hooper, vice president for audience research at NBC, said he expected they would be "pretty close" to the 15-city returns, which represent about 32% of the national television audience, with each ratings point representing about 290,000 homes.

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