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News Television

Virgin Galactic’s Space Odyssey Helps Cable Ratings Take Off

Douglas Pucci

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One of the notable news stories of the past week was when Virgin Galactic launched founder Richard Branson, chief astronaut instructor Beth Moses, lead operations engineer Colin Bennett and government affairs vice president Sirisha Bandla into space in a suborbital spaceflight aboard the aerospace company’s VSS Unity spacecraft on the morning of Sunday, July 11. 

The one-hour space trip launched from Spaceport America in New Mexico at 10:51 a.m. ET and had traveled more than 50 miles above Earth, which the U.S. government considers to mark the boundary of outer space.

Branson proclaimed, “To the next generation of dreamers: If we can do this, just imagine what you can do.”

For coverage of the event, Fox News Channel edged just past CNN in total viewers during the 11 a.m.-noon hour, 1.479 million to 1.444 million (CNN’s most-watched hour of the week), according to Nielsen Media Research; it was vice versa between the two networks based on the key adults 25-54 demographic: CNN 275,000, Fox News 227,000. MSNBC trailed both cable news outlets with 1.116 million total viewers and 189,000 adults 25-54 — yet, this delivery was well above the network’s usual weekend figures.

Later on July 11, CNN debuted the first two episodes of its eight-part documentary series “History of the Sitcom”. Their initial telecasts topped all of cable news within the 9-11 p.m. time slot:

9-10 p.m.

  • History Of The Sitcom “Part 1: A Family Matter” (CNN) 1.399 million viewers
  • The Next Revolution (FOXNC) 1.279 million viewers
  • The Week with Joshua Johnson (MSNBC) 0.470 million viewers

At 10 p.m., part two of “History Of The Sitcom”, entitled “Sex & The Sitcom”, drew 1.257 million viewers. It aired opposite re-airings of Fox News’ “Sunday Night In America” (947,000) and MSNBC’s “American Voices” (405,000).

Also on July 11: HLN’s crime docuseries “Forensic Files II” premiered its second season with back-to-back original episodes. The 10-11 p.m. hour averaged 176,000 adults 25-54, besting the entire Sunday prime times of each Fox News Channel (150,000) and MSNBC (approximately 60,000).

Here are the cable news averages for July 5-11, 2021 — cable’s best mark for the week in total viewers based on total day was by Fox News Channel; the 21st consecutive week FNC has accomplished this feat.

Total Day (July 5-11 @ 6 a.m.-5:59 a.m.)

  • Fox News Channel: 1.175 million viewers; 193,000 adults 25-54 
  • MSNBC: 0.752 million viewers; 100,000 adults 25-54
  • CNN: 0.598 million viewers; 125,000 adults 25-54

Prime Time (July 5-10 @ 8-11 p.m.; July 11 @ 7-11 p.m.)

  • Fox News Channel: 2.046 million viewers; 309,000 adults 25-54
  • MSNBC: 1.266 million viewers; 156,000 adults 25-54
  • CNN: 0.833 million viewers; 184,000 adults 25-54

Top 10 most-watched cable news programs (and the top CNN program with their respective associated rank) in total viewers:

1. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Thu. 7/8/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.229 million viewers

2. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Tue. 7/6/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.153 million viewers

3. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Wed. 7/7/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.083 million viewers

4. Hannity (FOXNC, Thu. 7/8/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.770 million viewers

5. Hannity (FOXNC, Wed. 7/7/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.767 million viewers

6. The Five (FOXNC, Thu. 7/8/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.622 million viewers

7. Hannity (FOXNC, Tue. 7/6/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.564 million viewers

8. The Five (FOXNC, Wed. 7/7/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.528 million viewers

9. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Fri. 7/9/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.508 million viewers

10. The Five (FOXNC, Tue. 7/6/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.473 million viewers

11. Rachel Maddow Show (MSNBC, Wed. 7/7/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.371 million viewers

47. Reliable Sources (CNN, Sun. 7/11/2021 11:00 AM, 60 min.) 1.444 million viewers

54. History Of The Sitcom “A Family Matter” (CNN, Sun. 7/11/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 1.399 million viewers

Top 10 cable news programs (and the top CNN and HLN programs with their respective associated ranks) among adults 25-54:

1. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Wed. 7/7/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.550 million adults 25-54

2. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Thu. 7/8/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.518 million adults 25-54

3. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Tue. 7/6/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.511 million adults 25-54

4. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Fri. 7/9/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.492 million adults 25-54

5. Hannity (FOXNC, Wed. 7/7/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.418 million adults 25-54

6. Hannity (FOXNC, Thu. 7/8/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.416 million adults 25-54

7. The Five (FOXNC, Thu. 7/8/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.389 million adults 25-54

8. Hannity (FOXNC, Fri. 7/9/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.353 million adults 25-54

9. Rachel Maddow Show (MSNBC, Wed. 7/7/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.349 million adults 25-54

10. The Five (FOXNC, Wed. 7/7/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.347 million adults 25-54

29. Anderson Cooper 360 (CNN, Tue. 7/6/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.284 million adults 25-54

124. Forensic Files II “The Obsession” (HLN, Sun. 7/11/2021 10:00 PM, 30 min.) 0.182 million adults 25-54

Source: Live+Same Day data, Nielsen Media Research

News Television

Mehdi Hasan: ‘Liberal Media’ Downplayed New Italian Prime Minister’s ‘Ties to Fascism’

“How about in the year 2022 we stop playing down, minimizing, whitewashing people who literally say or do fascist things?”

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MSNBC host Mehdi Hasan took aim at the “quote unquote liberal media” for its lack of criticism of new Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and her ties to fascism.

The Mehdi Hasan Show host began Sunday’s show by defending a recent tweet discussing Meloni’s victory in Italy’s election, and the problematic nature of some of her comments.

He mentioned he expected Republicans to embrace the new Italian Prime Minister, saying they are “at best, to quote the President, semi-fascist themselves”.

Hasan continued by saying “what has been so depressing, is just how much of the quote unquote liberal media — the mainstream media — are giving her a pass or playing down her and her party’s fascist roots, focusing more on the fact that she is female, and less on the fact that she is a fascist. That has been deeply, deeply depressing to see.”

He concluded by equating headlines from The Washington Post and The New York Times, among others, to those surrounding the 2020 election that said Donald Trump wouldn’t participate in a coup attempt.

“Look, I have a humble suggestion for many of my colleagues in the quote unquote liberal media,” Hasan said while he ended his monologue. “How about in the year 2022 we stop playing down, minimizing, whitewashing people who literally say or do fascist things? People who want to overturn elections and ban Muslims. People who, as in the case of Italy’s next Prime Minister, spout great replacement theory, while running a political party that has a direct connection back to Benito Mussolini himself? Can we try doing that? Please?”

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News Television

Natalie Morales Joining CBS News

“It’s a privilege to contribute to the CBS News programs and I’m hoping to tell the stories that matter and to talk about issues many of us face,” said Morales.

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Former NBC News anchor Natalie Morales is joining CBS News as a correspondent.

Morales left NBC News in October of last year, joining The Talk on CBS with Sheryl Underwood, Amanda Kloots, Jerry O’Connell, and Akbar Gbaja-Biamila. She will continue on the show, in addition to her new duties.

Morales, who will begin with CBS News on November 1st, will contribute to 48 Hours, as well as CBS Sunday Morning, and CBS Mornings.

“It’s a privilege to contribute to the CBS News programs and I’m hoping to tell the stories that matter and to talk about issues many of us face,” said Morales. “48 Hours pioneered true crime television and I’m looking forward to working with the great team of producers and correspondents to bring the best stories to CBS viewers on Saturday nights.”

Morales spent 23 years at NBC, most notably working on Dateline and The Today Show.

“Natalie is one of the best in the business and a welcome addition to CBS News,” said President and co-head of CBS News and Stations Neeraj Khemlani. “She has excelled at the highest levels – from network morning shows to longform storytelling – and we couldn’t be more thrilled to have her on our team. She will be doing stories for 48 Hours, CBS Mornings, CBS Sunday Morning and others. She knows how to get to the heart of a tough story with compassion and grace.”

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Greg Gutfeld Questions How Media Covers Acts of Violence

Gutfeld expressed outrage at the way some media outlets cover stories of random violence being carried out against innocent people.

Ryan Hedrick

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Fox News host Greg Gutfeld expressed outrage at the way some media outlets cover stories of random violence being carried out against innocent people. 

During “The Five” on Friday, Gutfeld said that he believed the viewing public is becoming numb to stories in which innocent people are hurt. 

“These things are happening with such mundane patterns or activity that we’ve gotten used to it,” he said. “Also, the media is not interested in [covering] it. We are doing it, but I don’t think this is on MSNBC or CNN, but I don’t know that because I don’t watch them.” 

Gutfeld was referencing the story of a New York City Emergency Medical Service, Lt. Alison Russo-Elling, who was stabbed to death by a random stranger. Russo-Elling was heralded for her service during 9/11. She worked for the city for 25 years.  

“It seems like the mainstream media is too interested in racism, activism, and pronouns and then when they do their stories, they just go onto Twitter to see how clever they can be.” 

“This woman survived 9/11 but couldn’t survive a trip to the bodega,” he said. “The crazy person aspect is becoming this thing with every story.” 

Gutfeld added that elected officials care about stories like this when their job is up. 

“They don’t care about people in marginal populations like the drug addicted or homeless,” he added. “The people that are committing a lot of these crimes are complete cowards.”

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