Following a solid July, A&E Network got off to a fast start during the
first two nights of what Nielsen Media Research considers August.
Buoyed by a 2.2 average audience rating for its presentation of Biography:
Bob Hope (2.4 million viewers) July 28, A&E posted a 1.6 rating in
primetime versus a 1.2 for the first two days of August 2002. Among adults
25-54, A&E scored a 24% advance to 601,000 of those viewers.
On a Nielsen down note, the second installment of British spy series
MI-5 earned only a 1.0 rating July 29, off from the 1.6 the series
premiere garnered July 22.
The August beginning comes on the heels of A&E highest monthly ranking of
the year in July. The network averaged a 1.2 household average audience rating
June 30-July 27, according to Nielsen data. That represented a 10% jump from
July 2002 ratings, as A&E finished in eighth place in primetime, according
to an ABC Cable Networks Group analysis of Nielsen data.
A&E’s Nielsen’s fortunes were bolstered by a third consecutive month of
growth for the Biography franchise. The signature series scored a 1.1
ratings average, a 10% increase from the prior-year period, as well as a 25%
advance in viewers to an average of 1.2 million.
Documentary The True Story of Seabiscuit July 27, timed to coincide
with the bow of the theatrical, raced to a 2.2 average audience rating, while
Cold Case Files: Through the Eyes of a Child (a 1.6 July 1), Poirot:
Evil Under the Sun (a 1.6 July 13) and Bill Kurtis Special Report: Who
Killed Laci Peterson? (a 1.7 July 22) also performed well.