NEW YORK -- The television ratings returned to normal last week after the holiday and football madness, which means 'The Cosby Show' was back in first place in the Nielsens, it was reported Tuesday.
It was a winning week in general for NBC, with four of the five top-rated shows. NBC also was a big winner in the Sunday movie battle. Its 'Man Against The Mob' ranked 17th, with a 19.7 rating and a 32 share, compared to the dreary numbers for CBS's big special, 'Terrorist On Trial,' which tied for 49th with a 13.2 rating and a 20 share. And for this CBS pre-empted 'Murder, She Wrote.'
That pre-emption helped two NBC Sunday shows make the top 10 - 'Family Ties' and 'My Two Dads.' In an interesting switch, 'My Two Dads' was the higher-ranked of the two shows, finishing eighth, while 'Family Ties' tied for 10th. It was the highest ranking ever for 'Dads.'
NBC won its second biggest victory of the season in the weekly ratings, outdistancing second place CBS by 4.4 ratings points. The biggest spread was the previous week, when NBC led by 4.9 points.
For the week ending Jan. 10 -- the 16th week of the season -- NBC won with a 18.5 rating and 29 share. CBS was second with a 14.1 rating and 22 share and ABC was third with a 13.5 rating and 21 share.
For the season to date, NBC was first with a 16.4 rating and 27 share. CBS was second with a 13.6 rating and 22 share, while ABC placed third with a 13.3 rating and 22 share.
In news, 'CBS Evening News' with Dan Rather was first for the 15th straight week with a 13.1 rating and 21 share. ABC's 'World News Tonight' with Peter Jennings was second with a 12.7 rating and 21 share, while 'NBC Nightly News' with Tom Brokaw finished third with an 12.4 rating and 20 share.
That's the highest rating for 'World News Tonight' since the week beginning Feb. 17, 1986. Compared to this time last year, ABC statisticians reported, 'World News Tonight' is up 12 percent, while CBS is up 2 percent and NBC is down 6 percent.
Each ratings point represents about 887,000 households and a share is the percentage of operating sets tuned to a particular show.
Winner of the week: Bill Cosby.
Loser of the week: CBS's 'Terrorist On Trial.'
The top prime time shows for the week ending Jan. 10, according to the A.C. Nielsen Co., were:
1. The Cosby Show (NBC)
2 Cheers (NBC)
3. A Different World (NBC)
4. Night Court (NBC)
5. Growing Pains (ABC)
6. (tie) The Golden Girls (NBC)
NBC Monday movie, 'The Ann Jillian Story'
8. My Two Dads (NBC)
9. 60 Minutes (CBS)
10. (tie) Family Ties (NBC)
Who's the Boss?