General News

Back to the Future?

Nov 30, 2001 | 10:02am EST

Analysts were continuing to express amazement over the fact that the highest-rated entertainment programs during the November sweeps were CBS specials featuring Carol Burnett, Michael Jackson and Lucille Ball.

Washington Post TV critic Tom Shales commented in his column today: "Let us now hug Carol Burnett. ... [Her ratings victory] sends a message to the networks that Americans are craving family programming once again. Sept. 11 casts a long shadow, and its effects will be felt for years to come. One of those effects is to make people hungry for TV programming that is familiar, reassuring, cozy, pleasant and positive."

Nevertheless, CBS president Les Moonves told Reuters Thursday: "Those who want to claim this was just a specials win are totally inaccurate. ... The bedrock of our success is the incredible depth of our core series."

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