What does it mean when an NBC affiliate runs a 21- year- old “Matlock” movie instead of the network’s Thursday night programming, to negligible ratings difference?
Cleveland’s WKYC- TV did just that Thursday, showing a “Matlock” movie from 1992 at 9 p.m., while the rest of the country watched an “Office” repeat, a new episode of White House sitcom “1600 Penn” and a “Law & Order: SVU” rerun.
Metered- market ratings showed “Matlock” outperformed “1600 Penn’s” recent performance in the Cleveland market. It was about on par with the repeat “Office’s” national performance. The “SVU” repeat was more popular, however.
Brooke Spectorsky, the station general manager and president told Entertainment Weekly he ran the movie because “Matlock” actor Andy Griffith was left out of the Oscars “In Memorium” segment last Sunday, and also to catch- up on airing local ad inventory. He said they do this once or twice a year, pre- empting the network and running a local movie. He said NBC approved the decision.
Spectorsky said the big lesson learned was not to pre- empt “The Office,” and that they got a lot of feedback on that move.