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A Brian Williams-Less NBC Nightly News Takes a Ratings Blow

NBC Nightly News has gone Brian Williams-less all week and has resulted in a bit of a ratings blow for the nightly newscast, which, in turn, ended up helping out one of its competitors.

According to fast affiliate numbers released by Nielsen, NBC started out with 9.8 million total viewers on Monday and dropped down to 8.6 million on Thursday. Ratings for NBC Nightly News dropped down every night, while ABC World News Tonight and CBS Evening News did experience some ratings bumps.

The ratings blow to NBC was particularly beneficial to ABC and anchor David Muir. Since Muir took over the anchor chair, ABC World News Tonight had only beaten NBC Nightly News in the overall ratings ten times (7 of those on Fridays). But ABC beat NBC both on Wednesday and Thursday in total viewers (9.0 and 8.9 respectively to NBC’s 8.7 and 8.6).

ABC also beat NBC in the 25-54 news demo on Monday night, with 2.6 million to NBC’s 2.5 million. And only last Friday, in Williams’ final newscast before bowing out, Muir had overtaken him in both total viewers and the 25-54 demo.

Wednesday night, the night that ABC overtook NBC, was the first NBC Nightly News broadcast after NBC decided to suspend Williams for six months (and the first that dropped Williams’ name from the show). However, the biggest day-to-day drop for NBC was from Monday (9.8 total, 2.5 in demo) to Tuesday (8.8 total, 2.1 in demo).

CBS Evening News and Scott Pelley, meanwhile, saw a big ratings jump from Wednesday (6.8 total) to Thursday (7.9 total). Thursday night’s newscast led with the tragic news of the death of CBS’ own Bob Simon.

[image via screengrab]

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: josh@mediaite.com Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac