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A ranking slip, despite fancy skating

January 20, 2006|Scott Collins

The producers of Fox's "Skating With Celebrities" owe Simon Cowell a big hug.

"Skating" waltz-jumped to a fine start in the ratings Wednesday night, with an average of 18.7 million viewers, according to preliminary data from Nielsen Media Research. That made the premiere a strong No. 2 for the 9 p.m. hour, behind ABC's hit drama "Lost" (19.3 million), which yielded one of its weaker ratings performances of the season.

Still, it's a safe bet "Skating" wouldn't have done so well without its potent lead-in from "American Idol" (31.4 million). The second part of "Idol's" fifth-season premiere (Part 1 broke ratings records on Tuesday) featured Cowell and his fellow judges hearing auditions in Denver.

Only a little more than half of "Idol's" huge young-adult audience stuck around to watch the ice follies of Bruce Jenner and other celebs. "Skating" also lost 16% of its total audience over the course of the hour, while "Lost" grew by 5%.

-- Scott Collins

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