Monday, April 05, 2010


David Carr, the media columnist of The New York Times, seems to think Sarah Palin is still boffo at the box office. The numbers, however, don't really bear that out.


... With its tales of uplift and pluck, "Real American Stories" trades in the kind of easy sentimentality that provokes eye rolls among those of us who work in media while quickening the pulse and patriotic ardor of almost everyone else....

Ms. Palin ... was a ratings sensation from the word go: her first paid appearance, as a commentator on "The O'Reilly Factor" on Jan. 12, was good for an extra million viewers.

Her appeal doesn't stop at the red states. When Ms. Palin stopped by to chat with Oprah Winfrey -- not exactly friendly territory -- the show achieved its biggest ratings in two years....

But what Carr failed to note is that a Palin appearance doesn't provide a ratings boost anymore. I told you that a month ago, when her Leno appearance gave him no bump, and TV by the Numbers confirms that the same is true of her new show:

Sarah Palin's Real American Stories performed modestly for Fox News on Thursday night. Its 2.073 million viewers and 472,000 adults 25-54 dwarfed the competition, but compared to On the Record with Greta last Thursday at 10pm, there was nothing special about Palin's ratings. Last Thursday Greta averaged 2.3 million viewers and 654,000 adults 25-54....

Palin’s lead-in, Hannity had 2.256 million and 526,000 adults 25-54, and at 8pm O'Reilly averaged 2.98 million viewers and 653,000 adults 25-54....

So: Palin's show didn't do as well as the two lead-in shows. It didn't do as well as the regularly scheduled show in the time slot. Oh, and, according to TV Newser, it had a lot of mid-show tune-outs:

Looking at quarter hour data, "Real American Stories" shed viewers from start to finish -- down 18% among Total Viewers (2.319mm vs. 1.895mm) and down 22% in A25-54 (533k vs. 418k) from the program's first to its final quarter hour.

The novelty has worn off, Sarah. We've watched you. We don't need to watch you anymore. Only your fans and Fox fans care anymore.

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