comScore Cable News Ratings - Anderson Cooper - CNN
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10 P.M. Suddenly The Hottest Horserace In Cable News As CNN’s Anderson Cooper Becomes Ratings Threat

Cable news ratings, February 25, 2011:

•Friday nights are often poorly rated for hard news shows, but CNN’s Anderson Cooper had his second-best Friday night of February on the 25th, with 299,000 viewers. He still came in third, behind Fox’s Greta Van Susteren and MSNBC’s Friday night prison series, Lockup. (Cooper did beat Lockup among total viewers) But 299,000 in the demo is an important number, better than any other show on CNN Friday night, and better even than MSNBC’s replacement for Keith Olbermann at 8 p.m., Lawrence O’Donnell.

When ratings for February are released by the networks tomorrow, it’s clear Cooper will have plenty to feel good about, taking second place overall and showing real power in the race for first. On February 4, Cooper beat Fox’s Van Susteren, and he came within 7,000 viewers (25-54) of tying her show, On the Record, last Thursday. For the entire month–with outliers like MSNBC’s Lockup (which usually does extremely well) not included, Cooper will beat MSNBC’s Ed Schultz at 10, marking CNN’s first second place finish over MSNBC since last June.

MSNBC, which revamped its entire primetime lineup after Olbermann’s departure, has not surrendered at 10, where Schultz has been a strong competitor. Compared to a year ago, in fact, MSNBC’s ratings in the hour are up 41 percent among viewers 25-54. But Cooper’s up far more–83 percent. That figure will clearly have been affected by Cooper’s reporting from Egypt and his highly publicized run-in with punch-throwing goons. His numbers, however, have remained strong since his return (439,000 viewers 25-54 on Thursday). And just as Cooper delivers some of his strongest ratings in months, Van Susteren has had an off month, with year-to-year ratings for February dropping slightly.

For all the talk of Piers Morgan and Lawrence O’Donnell, this remains the race to watch.

•Also on Friday, the farewell of Kathleen Parker did not lead to significant tune in, with the final edition of Parker Spitzer coming in third among viewers 25-54, with 153,000. MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell was second, with 275,000 and Fox’s Bill O’Reilly ruled the hour with 751,000.

Here’s the full scoreboard:

TV NEWS RATINGS: 25-54 DEMOGRAPHIC (L +SD)
Fox News CNN MSNBC CNN Headline News
5 pm Beck

416

Blitzer

215

Matthews

195

Showbiz

60

6 pm Baier

462

Blitzer

231

Live

168

Prime

78

7 pm Shep

448

King, USA

215

Matthews

191

Issues

119

8 pm O’Reilly

751

ParkerSpitzer

153

O’Donnell

275

Grace

131

9 pm Hannity

470

Morgan

185

Maddow

377

Missing

75

10 pm Van Susteren

321

Cooper

299

Lockup

358

Behar

99

11 pm O’Reilly

379

Cooper

279

Lockup

336

Showbiz

86

TOTAL DAY 360 216 190 95
PRIME TIME 515 212 337 100
Data by Nielsen Media Research. Live and same day (DVR) data.
TV NEWS RATINGS: TOTAL VIEWERS (L +SD)
Fox News CNN MSNBC CNN Headline News
5 pm Beck

1862

Blitzer

751

Matthews

735

Showbiz

60

6 pm Baier

2108

Blitzer

713

Live

630

Prime

78

7 pm Shep

1869

King, USA

685

Matthews

658

Issues

119

8 pm O’Reilly

3090

ParkerSpitzer

519

O’Donnell

1034

Grace

131

9 pm Hannity

1808

Morgan

678

Maddow

1207

Missing

75

10 pm Van Susteren

1402

Cooper

927

Lockup

634

Behar

99

11 pm O’Reilly

1416

Cooper

669

Lockup

653

Showbiz

86

TOTAL DAY 1426 624 561 241
PRIME TIME 2106 708 958 350
Data by Nielsen Media Research. Live and same day (DVR) data

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