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TNT Wins Summer Primetime Laurels

8/30/2005 6:01 AM Eastern

Turner Network Television, boosted by ratings winners such as The Closer and Into the West, enjoyed a hot summer this year, winning the primetime viewership crown, according to Nielsen Media Research data released Tuesday.

TNT racked up a 2.4 primetime rating this summer season, up 14% from last summer’s 2.1, according to a Disney ABC Cable Networks analysis of Nielsen data. USA Network and Disney Channel tied for second place, with a 2.0 rating each. USA was down 5%, while Disney Channel was up 5%.

In third place, Fox News Channel and Nick at Nite were also tied with a 1.7 primetime rating, according to Nielsen. Fox News saw a tidy 21% gain, up from a 1.4 last summer, while Nick at Nite was up 6%, from a 1.6.

Lifetime Television posted a 1.6 rating, flat versus last summer. Lifetime was followed by TBS and Cartoon Network, each with a 1.4. TBS slipped 7%, from a 1.5 last summer, as did Cartoon Network, dipping 13% from a 1.6.

Spike TV generated a 1.3 primetime summer rating, a whopping 63% increase from last summer’s 0.8 rating.

Turner South was flat with its 1.2 rating. MTV: Music Television, ESPN and Hallmark Channel all registered a 1.1 rating, according to Nielsen. MTV saw a 10% increase, ESPN dropped 8%, and Hallmark Channel enjoyed a 22% primetime gain, according to Nielsen.

Sci Fi Channel, FX and AMC each posted a 1.0 primetime rating this summer. Sci Fi and FX were each down 9%, while AMC posted a 25% increase.

For total day, Nickelodeon retained its longtime first-place position, with a 1.9 rating, flat compared with last summer.

Some of the biggest gainers in primetime this summer were: Biography Channel, up 100% to a 0.2; Headline News, up 100% to a 0.4; Noggin/The N and Outdoor Life Channel, each up 50% to a 0.3; and WE: Women’s Entertainment, up 50% to a 0.3.

The biggest losers included: MSNBC, down 25% to a 0.3 in primetime; TLC, down 25% to a 0.6; Discovery Channel, down 20% to a 0.8; and GSN, down 20% to a 0.4.

The summer season spanned May 30 through Aug. 28.

September