NEW YORK -- For the first time in many a ratings moon, CBS toppled out of first place in the Nielsen race both for prime time numbers and in evening news programing. ABC was the spoiler in both categories.
ABC rammed five of its veteran prime time campaigners -- most of them in re-runs -- and the movie 'Mae West' into the Top 10 to rack up a rating of 15.4 and an audience share of 26. CBS was down a full share point at 14.7 and 25 and NBC was down two share points at 13.8 and 24.
But it was evening news programing -- a concession long owned and operated by CBS -- that gave ABC what has to be its most joyous win, thin though the win may have been.
'World News Tonight,' claiming superiority in coverage of the Falkland Islands crisis, topped the list with a rating of 12.1 and a share of 24. The CBS 'Evening News' was second at 11.8 and an identical 24 share, and NBC's 'Nightly News' fell to third with 11.2 and 22.
The top 10 programs for the week ending May 2, according to the A.C. Nielsen Co., were:
l. 60 Minutes (CBS).
2. Dynasty (ABC).
3. ABC Sunday Night Movie: 'Mae West' (ABC).
4. M-A-S-H (CBS).
5. Fall Guy (ABC).
6. Too Close for Comfort (ABC).
7. Hart to Hart (ABC).
8. Magnum, P.I. (CBS).
9. Three's Company (ABC).
10. The Jeffersons (CBS).