Maybe it is not a "Down goes Frazier! Down goes Frazier! Down goes Frazier!" moment, but the ratings of primetime cable news networks have experienced a new king being crowned in (in its most coveted demo) - in this case, it is actually a queen.
Rachel Maddow, host of MSNBC's creatively titled The Rachel Maddow Show, beat Bill O'Reilly in the coveted 25-54 (what odd numbers) demo this week, 703,000 viewers to 682,000.
MSNC regularly finishes behind Fox News Channel, which makes this news surprising. On Monday, MSNBC averaged 471,000 viewers 25-54, while FNC had 469,000. Tuesday, the gab grew, as MSNBC had 575,000 viewers in the demo, versus FNC's 526,000. I wonder what could have caused the jump?
It was expected that O'Reilly would have a strong number, with his much-publicized visit from The Daily Show's Jon Stewart.
Now, in total viewers it is a different story - by a large margin. Tuesday's O'Reilly Factor drew 3.35 million viewers to Maddow's 2.04 million. Moreover, as a primetime block, FNC had 2.49 million viewers versus MSNBC's 1.79. Therefore, I do not think FNC needs to worry too much.
Can Maddow sustain such numbers? Alternatively, was this a one-time deal, with Mitt Romney's "47 percent" comments drawing viewers in? I guess we will see soon.