42 Million Watch Final Hour Of Boston Manhunt
Some 42 million viewers were in front of their TV sets watching the final hour of the manhunt for the Boston bomber Friday night -- nearly twice the number who usually have their sets on on a Friday, generally a light night for TV viewing. According to Nielsen, during the three hours of primetime between 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m., the three major broadcast networks (ABC, CBS and NBC) and the three major cable news networks (CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC) together averaged 35.9 million viewers versus 21.9 million for a typical Friday. NBC, usually the lowest-rated of the broadcast networks on Friday nights, saw its audience nearly quadruple for its coverage of the manhunt. CNN, whose ratings have been in freefall in recent years -- and the brunt of scathing criticism for its inaccurate reporting following the bombings -- drew its best ratings in a decade -- save for political coverage.