Despite a steady leveling-off since Monday's monster debut ratings, the good news for Conan O'Brien seems to only continue. Conan is still posting rating numbers ahead of both THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN and NIGHTLINE. In fact, a new advertising campaign by CBS seems to indicate some concern by CBS that longtime comic icon David Letterman has been unable to best Conan O'Brien so far this week in ratings.
CBS is likely viewing things as a long-term project to win over some former Jay Leno viewers to Letterman. Yet despite, Conan appealing to a younger, more hip audience than Leno, whose audience kept aging, Conan manages to be posting rating numbers nearly identical to Leno so far. Further, Conan may have the potential to grow a new audience of his own as well as to put together decent numbers from his own loyal fans as well as many regular TONIGHT SHOW fans from Jay Leno. All of this appears to be frustrating to executives at CBS who hoped for more disaffected Jay Leno viewers to jump ship to Letterman.
Conan's program has some decidedly more goofy humor than Leno, which may not strike the fancy of every Leno fan. Yet, so far there hasn't been any ratings loss to indicate this off-beat humor has turned off the 11:35 audience that long belonged to late night icons like Carson or Leno. So far, Conan has done a decent job to hold down the ratings fort at NBC and not give up any ground to CBS or ABC. Whether this continues in the future still remains a question to be answered. But so far, so good for Conan for now.
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