CBS's 'Trace' tops NBC's fading 'ER'Wins 10 p.m. slot for second week in a row
By Diego Vasquez MediaLifeMagazine.com
Oct 14, 2005
No matter how many times ER reinvents itself, and it's certainly been many, it can't hold up against CBS when the rest of NBC's schedule is so weak.
Last week CBS's Without a Trace topped ER among adults 18-49 for the first time in their four-year timeslot battle Thursday at 10 p.m. It did it again last night, averaging a 6.7 Nielsen overnight rating to ER's 6.1, a 10 percent advantage.
ER and Trace both fell 3 percent week to week undoubtedly because of Fox's coverage of the National League Championship Series, which didn't finish until after 11 p.m. Fox averaged a 3.4 that hour.
ER isn't getting much support from the lineup that used to provide so much momentum. NBC averaged just a 3.9 in adults 18-49 from 8 to 10 p.m. Comparatively, ER is actually holding up pretty well - it built on lead-in The Apprentice's 4.6 average by 32 percent.
But ER is an aging show, now in its 12th year, while Trace is a mere pup at four years old. ER has weathered cast changes and plot twists while still remaining one of the top dramas in 18-49s.
Last year Trace passed ER in total viewers, and many figured it was only a matter of time before NBC's 8-10 schedule slowed down enough that ER became vulnerable in 18-49s.
Now it looks as though Trace's No. 1 finish last week was the start of a new trend. Expect the show to remain there for the foreseeable future, especially as unfamiliar faces continue to cycle through ER.http://medialifemagazine.com/artman/...rticle_690.asp