Conservatives keep ‘Roseanne’ on top of TV ratings

By David Bauder Ap Media Writer

NEW YORK — As the rebooted "Roseanne" continues to dominate the television landscape, research indicates that enthusiasm expressed for the show's initial success by President Donald Trump and Fox News Channel had an impact on its audience.

Both Trump and Fox commentators said the show's initial stunning success was a reflection of the show's lead character, played by Roseanne Barr, portraying a Trump supporter. The research organization Samba TV said viewership among people who also watched Fox News regularly increased by 40 percent from the first to second week on the air. For people who also watched MSNBC, which appeals more to liberals, viewership was down 11 percent for the same period.

"The conservative audience is really carrying over," said Jen Whalen, marketing director for Samba TV.

The company's research also indicates that older viewers are sticking with the series at a higher rate than younger people.

The Nielsen company's research said that 12 percent of "Roseanne" viewers last week also watched Fox News Channel, compared to 7 percent for the show's premiere.

But ABC said those figures hardly indicate that the "Roseanne" audience lacks diversity. According to Nielsen data, 38 percent of the comedy's audience last week identified itself as conservative, 41 percent said they were moderate and 22 percent said they were liberal. The show's audience of 13.8 million on the first night it was broadcast last week led all prime-time programming for the third week in a row.

"When a show reaches over 27 million viewers and ranks as the most popular show on television, it's a strong indication that the series has broad appeal," said ABC spokeswoman Jori Arancio, citing ratings that include people who watch on a delayed basis.

CBS' depth enabled it to win the week in prime time, averaging 7.2 million viewers. ABC had 4.9 million viewers, NBC had 4.7 million, Fox had 2.6 million, Univision had 1.5 million, ION Television had 1.4 million, the CW had 1.11 million and Telemundo had 1.08 million.

Fox News Channel was the week's most popular cable network, averaging 2.59 million viewers in prime time. MSNBC had 2.17 million, TNT had 1.49 million, HGTV had 1.36 million and USA had 1.33 million.

ABC's "World News Tonight" topped the evening newscasts with an average of 8.2 million viewers. NBC's "Nightly News" had 7.8 million and the "CBS Evening News" had 5.9 million.

For the week of April 9-15, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: "Roseanne," ABC, 13.77 million; "The Big Bang Theory," CBS, 12.78 million; "Academy of Country Music Awards," CBS, 12.06 million; "Young Sheldon," CBS, 11.7 million; "60 Minutes," CBS, 10.57 million; "Interview with James Comey," ABC, 9.87 million; "The Voice" (Monday), NBC, 9.86 million; "Mom," CBS, 8.94 million; "Blue Bloods," CBS, 8.24 million; "Survivor," CBS, 7.98 million.