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TV Ratings : Surprise! Oscar Does Well--and So Does ABC

March 30, 1994|LEE MARGULIES

With ratings just a fraction below those of a year ago, the Academy Awards telecast emerged as the highest-rated entertainment program of the season and helped propel ABC to its third victory in as many weeks. With Whoopi Goldberg as host, the Oscar show attracted 49% of the available viewers, the A. C. Nielsen Co. reported Tuesday.

ABC had 12 other programs among the Top 20, including two episodes of "Home Improvement," a Barbara Walters special, "NYPD Blue," "Thunder Alley" and three of its news series--"Turning Point," "PrimeTime Live" and "20/20."

Despite its strong performance the past few weeks, ABC will be unable to catch CBS in the seasonal prime-time standings. The so-called "official" 30-week TV season--the period used to compare one season to another, even though first-run programming continues--ends April 17.

NBC, meanwhile, didn't get Winter Olympics-sized ratings with its World Figure Skating Championships on Friday and Saturday, but that event drew larger audiences than CBS garnered on Thursday and Friday for coverage of the NCAA basketball tournament.

Southland Ratings

Here are A. C. Nielsen's Top 10 prime-time programs in the Los Angeles area during the same week. Each rating point equals 50,064 households.

Program Station Rating 1. "Barbara Walters Special" KABC 34.3 2. Roseanne KABC 21.4 3. Home Improvement KABC 21.0 4. Coach KABC 19.3 5. Seinfeld KNBC 19.0 6. "Winners" KABC 18.8 7. The Simpsons KTTV 18.0 8. 60 Minutes KCBS 17.2 9. Beverly Hills, 90210 KTTV 16.3 Home Improvement (8 p.m.) KABC 16.3

Weekly Averages

ABC 14.3

CBS 11.7

NBC 10.8

FOX 7.3

Season to Date

CBS 14.2

ABC 12.5

NBC 11.2

FOX 7.2

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