NEW YORK, Dec. 28 -- The Nielsen TV ratings for Christmas week, which was dominated by reruns, slipped a point or two for most programs, allowing ABC's Monday night football telecast to grab the No. 1 spot on the top 10 list. It was ABC's week all the way, according to ratings for the week ending Dec. 25 reported by the A.C. Nielsen Company. The network dominated weekly ratings, the nightly wins, evening news coverage, and the season to date. Only one Christmas special, NBC's Monday night movie, 'One Christmas,' based on a Truman Capote story and including Katharine Hepburn in the cast, made the top 10 list. It was in eighth place with a ratings of 13.6 and an audience viewing share of 21 percent. Monday football featuring the Dallas Cowboys versus the New Orleans Saints rated 19.5-32 at the top of the list ahead of the usual sitcom favorites, ABC's 'Home Improvement' and 'Grace Under Fire,' NBC's 'Seinfeld' and 'Mad About You,' all in rerun. The list was filled out by more reruns -- NBC's 'E.R.,' the season's only new show among the top 10, and ABC's 'Roseanne,' 'NYPD Blue,' 'and 'Ellen.' ABC swept the ratings with a 10.4-19, followed by NBC, 9.5-17, and CBS 9.4-17. Fox made a showing with 7.6-12 with 15 hours of prime time programming compared to the other networks' 22. ABC dominated viewing on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday nights. CBS took Saturday and Sunday, as customary, leaving NBC Thursday and Friday.
ABC was the leader, as always, in evening news coverage, registering 11-21. CBS was second with 8.9-17 and NBC third with 8.7-17. ABC also took six of the top 10 spots and NBC took four, closing out CBS. ABC was comfortably out in front for the season so far with an overall rating of 12-20. CBS registered 11.7-19 and NBC 11.3-19. Each rating point represents about 942,000 households. A share is the percentage of TV sets in use that are tuned into a particular show or network. ------
The top 10 programs for the past week, according to Nielsen, were: 1. Monday football, Dallas vs. New Orleans (ABC) 19.5-32. 2. 'Home Improvement' (ABC) 18.9-29. 3. 'Grace Under Fire' (ABC) 18.1-29. 4. 'Seinfeld' (NBC) 17.3-28. 5. 'Mad About You' (NBC) 16.5-27. 6. 'E.R.' (NBC) 15.3-26. 7. 'Roseanne' (ABC) 14-22. 8. Monday movie, 'One Chistmas' (NBC) 13.6-21. 9. NYPD Blue (ABC) 13.2-23. 10. Ellen (ABC) 12.8-20.