TLC Reels In Cable Record Audience For Miss America Pageant

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Discovery Communications-owned TLC’s Jan. 26 live telecast of the Miss America pageant was crowned the most watched on cable, drawing 3.6 million viewers.

The Miss America Live! show, in which Miss Michigan Kirsten Haglund took home the 87-year old pageant’s coveted title, performed 52 percent higher than the 2.3 million viewers who tune into last year’s pageant telecast on Viacom-owned, country music-based CMT and 18 percent higher than the 3.0 million viewers CMT drew in 2006.

TLC acquired the pageant’s TV rights this past August after CMT declined to exercise a distribution option for the 2008 event. CMT in 2006 was the first cable network to air the pageant after a five decade run on broadcast television.

The telecast also ranked first among basic cable networks for the evening among 18-34 year old viewers (1.2 million). In addition, the median age of viewers for the telecast was 37, nearly seven years younger than the 2007 show and 14 years younger than in 2006.

TLC’s reality series Miss America Reality Check averaged 1 million viewers for its four-episode run, including 1.06 million viewers for its Jan. 25 finale. The series took a behind the scenes look at the Miss America contestants.

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