Wednesday, April 24, 2024

MDA Labor Day Telethon is a Ratings Bust, Finishing 4th for the Night


I can’t say I’m shocked. The MDA Show of Strength “telethon” on ABC was a ratings bust. It finished four last night at 9 and at 10pm, well behind the network competition. In the four half hours, it went from 1.72 million viewers to 1.26 to 1.10 to 1.25. The telethon had a significant fall off from ABC’s “Secret Millionaire” at 8pm, which had 3.98 million. Four or five times the number of people were watching CBS all night from “Big Brother” through “The Mentalist”– and the latter was a repeat. The MDA demo was less than “60 Minutes,” show that skews older anyway. Frankly the Backstreet Boys felt very much like an “Andy Williams Show” act. There was no connection with a young audience at all. MDA’s actual donations during the two hours remain a mystery. Here’s the deal: Jerry Lewis at least provided kitschy hipness from Vegas, with the potential for something cool to happen. The show at least had the Rat Pack vibe in its history. Last night’s show was like a visit to an 8 track counter. But Kenny Loggins is either using amazing cosmetics or has a fantastic plastic surgeon. God bless him, he’s 65.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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