Fans gave Bob Newhart a bang-up farewell by making the final show of the "Newhart" series the No. 1 program of the ratings week, it was reported today.
A glance at the top of the Nielsen list for the week ending Sunday made it look like old times for CBS, with the network that once routinely dominated television capturing three of the top four. "Newhart" was on top, "Murphy Brown" in third right behind second-place "Cheers" (NBC), and "Designing Women," fourth.
But reality snapped back and NBC remained the most-watched network, with CBS still in third place.
The season finale of "Twin Peaks," which ABC moved from Thursday to Wednesday night so it could be included in the May sweeps, ranked 24th and won its time period but not by enough to allow ABC to wrest the night from NBC.
Americans had something better to do over the Memorial Day weekend than watch television, which pushed ABC's "American's Funniest Home Videos" down to 24th, a steep drop from No. 1 the previous week.
The Sunday movies also suffered--"Diamonds Are Forever" (ABC) was the highest ranked in 40th place. NBC put a "Saturday Night Live" anniversary special in the movie slot and it tied for 42nd, while CBS's "At Mother's Request," Part 2, tied for 47th.
"Wings" (NBC) remains the top new show of the spring season, tied for 11th place, and "Carol & Company" (NBC) was 25th.
TOP 10 SHOWS
The top 10 programs for the week ending Sunday, May 27, according to the A.C. Nielsen Co., were:
1. Newhart (CBS)
2. Cheers (NBC)
3. Murphy Brown (CBS)
4. Designing Women (CBS)
5. Roseanne (ABC)
6. A Different World (NBC)
7. 'Killing In A Small Town,' CBS Tuesday movie
8. The Cosby Show (NBC)
9. Unsolved Mysteries (NBC)
(tie) 'Voices Within: The Lives of Truddi Chase' (ABC)