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Ch.4 set to overtake Ch.2 at 6 p.m.; Walters' final "View" scores here

By Alan Pergament 

With the May sweeps ending tonight, it looks like there will be at least one upset in local news competition.

With only Tuesday and Wednesday's newscasts left, Channel 4 is ahead of Channel 2 at 6 p.m. by a small but significant margin that looks impossible to overcome.

Channel 2 has been No.1 overall in the 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. news block since the first sweeps after Channel 4 lost "Oprah" as the news lead-in in November of 2011.

The NBC affiliate has been No. 1 at 6 p.m. for the last five sweeps starting in February of 2013.

A year ago, the newscast led by Channel 2's co-anchor team of Scott Levin and Maryalice Demler won at 6 p.m., 9.4 to 8.5, over Channel 4's anchor team of Don Postles and Jacquie Walker.

But the tide has turned. Up until Tuesday during this May's sweeps, Channel 4 is ahead, 9.9 to 9.3. That's a swing of 1.5 ratings points in a year in the time period. 

Channel 2 continues to dominate with Levin and Kelly Dudzik as co-anchors at 5 p.m., when it gets a stronger lead-in from "Ellen" than Channel 4 gets from "Dr. Oz." But its lead drops after that. Channel 4 also has tightened the race at 5:30 p.m. from a year ago. While Channel 4's news numbers were flat at 6.5 from a year ago at 5:30, Channel 2's ratings were down six-tenths of a point from a year ago and averaged a 7.6 after Monday’s newscast.

In other ratings news, WBBZ's telecast Monday night of 30 minutes of memories with Channel 7 legends Irv Weinstein, Rick Azar and Tom Jolls didn't exactly become must-see TV here. Part 1 of the two-part interview had a 1.2 rating, which was lower than the classic shows carried before and after it. An "M*A*S*H" rerun before it had a 1.3 rating and two "Gilligan’s Island" reruns after it averaged a 1.5.

WBBZ did get an unusually high 2.7 rating for a rerun of "The Untouchables" that ran at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday. A "Perry Mason" rerun had a 2.5 rating at 11:30 p.m. Monday.

Barbara Walters' goodbye on "The View" last Friday was a big hit on Channel 7, the local ABC affiliate. It had a 5.8 local rating, about 80 percent higher than the 3.3 rating the 11 a.m. program has averaged in May.

The two-hour Walters prime time special Friday had a 7.0 rating on Channel 2, which is very high by Friday night standards.


Television | TV news
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About Talkin' TV

Alan Pergament

Alan Pergament

Alan Pergament has continued to blog about television topics since retiring in 2010 as The News' television writer after 28 years on the beat. From local on-air personalities to ratings to the latest on network and cable programming, he keeps you informed.

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