Cable television networks offer sports, reality, comedy and drama. But what’s selling now is opinionated news.
Sixteen of the 17 most-watched programs on cable last week were either on Fox News Channel or MSNBC, the Nielsen company said. The only exception was coverage of the NBA draft on ESPN.
Three editions of Sean Hannity’s show on Fox were the three most-watched programs. Fox and MSNBC were the two highest-rated cable news networks for the week, and Fox News did better than Fox’s broadcast entertainment network.
For broadcasters, NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” is clearly the summer’s most dominant show, with a margin of more than 4 million viewers over any other program.
Despite the “Talent” head start, CBS was the week’s most popular network in prime time, averaging 4.3 million viewers. NBC had 4.1 million, ABC had 3.4 million, Fox had 2.1 million, Univision had 1.5 million, ION Television had 1.4 million, Telemundo had 1.1 million and the CW had 810,000.
Fox News averaged 2.45 million viewers in prime time. MSNBC had 1.73 million, USA had 1.45 million, ESPN had 1.42 million and HGTV had 1.39 million.
ABC’s “World News Tonight” stayed in first among the evening newscasts with a 7.7 million viewer average. NBC’s “Nightly News” was second with 7.2 million and the “CBS Evening News” had 5.4 million viewers.
For the week of June 18-24, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: “America’s Got Talent,” NBC, 11.86 million; “60 Minutes,” CBS, 7.6 million; “Celebrity Family Feud,” ABC, 6.55 million; “World of Dance,” NBC, 6.22 million; “NCIS,” CBS, 5.82 million; “The Big Bang Theory,” CBS, 5.77 million; “The Bachelorette,” ABC, 5.714 million; “Young Sheldon,” CBS, 5.707 million; “Code Black,” CBS, 5.705 million; “Instinct,” CBS, 5.63 million.
ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Co. CBS is owned by CBS Corp. CW is a joint venture of Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corp. Fox is owned by 21st Century Fox. NBC and Telemundo are owned by Comcast Corp. ION Television is owned by ION Media Networks.