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TV Ratings : ‘MASH,’ ‘E.T.’ Give CBS a Boost

A tribute to “MASH” and the TV debut of “E.T.” helped propel CBS to the forefront of the ratings last week, but NBC wound up winning the November sweeps anyway, the A.C. Nielsen Co. reported Tuesday.

For the week ending Sunday, CBS averaged a 14.2 rating in prime time, compared to 12.1 for NBC and 11.3 for ABC (each point represents 921,000 homes). But for the monthlong period, used by local stations in setting advertising rates, NBC averaged 13.2 to CBS’ 12.9 and ABC’s 12.6. CBS continues to lead in the season standings. As for “E.T.,” ABC noted that while CBS’ Thanksgiving broadcast ranked fifth in terms of households tuning in--16.9 million--it actually had the largest audience of the week in terms of people in front of the set, nearly 37 million. The full list of last week’s ratings is on F14.

* Is cable still a not-ready-for-prime-time player? Despite the presence of pop stars such as Michael Jackson and Madonna, MTV’s 10th anniversary special on Wednesday night drew only 18% of the available audience to ABC. It was beaten both by CBS’ telecast of “The Wizard of Oz” and by NBC’s combination of “Unsolved Mysteries” and “Seinfeld.”

Show Points Share 1. “60 Minutes” (CBS) 23.7 36 2. “Murphy Brown” (CBS) 21.0 30 3. “Roseanne” (ABC) 19.5 29 4. “Memories of MASH” (CBS) 18.8 29 5. “E.T.” (CBS) 18.4 34 * “MTV 10" (ABC) 10.7 18

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