Up against stiff sweeps competition, ranging from the season finale of
Friends to the National Basketball Association playoffs, Lifetime
Television still managed to retain its No. 1 crown in the primetime ratings in
May, officials said Wednesday.
The women's network captured its first May win ever, and it has now ranked
first in primetime for five consecutive months. Lifetime tallied a 2.0 primetime
household rating in May, up 18 percent over the same month last year, according
to Nielsen Media Research.
Turner Network Television and Nickelodeon tied for second place in primetime,
each with a 1.9 rating. But while TNT was flat in household ratings growth, Nick
was up a sizable 27 percent.
Two Turner networks, Cartoon Network and TBS Superstation, tied for third
place in primetime, each with a 1.6 rating. Cartoon was flat compared with a
year ago, while TBS was up 7 percent from a 1.5 rating.
They were followed by USA Network, down 13 percent to a 1.4, and A&E Network with a 1.1, the same as last May.
Then ESPN, Discovery Channel, FX and Fox News Channel all scored 1.0 ratings.
ESPN was down 9 percent from a year ago, while Discovery was flat. News Corp.'s
FX was up 25 percent -- enjoying a boost from its hit, The Shield --while FNC saw a 67 percent gain.
FNC once again bested Cable News Network in primetime and total-day ratings.
In primetime in May, CNN did a 0.8 rating, up 60 percent but behind FNC's 1.0.
In total-day, FNC racked up a 0.6 rating in May, up 100 percent, while CNN
landed a 0.5 rating, a 67 percent increase.
Nick registered strong gains in total-day, as well as primetime. It ranked
No. 1 on a 24-hour basis with a 1.6 rating, a 23 percent increase. It was
followed by Lifetime, flat with a 1.2, and Cartoon, which was up 10 percent with
a 1.1 rating.
TNT and TBS dominated the key adult demographics in primetime in May. In
adults 18 through 34, fueled by the NBA playoffs, TNT was No. 1 in delivery with
535,000, followed by TBS with 455,000. For adults 18 through 49, TNT and TBS
also ranked first and second, respectively, in delivery in