Thursday November 22, 2012

NEW YORK -- CBS is getting a bigger bang out of its most popular comedy.

"The Big Bang Theory" set a series record with 17.6 million viewers last week, accrding to the Nielsen Co. The Thursday night comedy, now in its sixth year on the network, was second only to NBC’s Sunday night football game in popularity for the week.

The show, about four geeky technology institute workers, an aspiring actress and their friends, is in its third year on CBS’ Thursday night schedule. Its reruns are very popular on TBS and appear to be fueling interest in original episodes.

It was a big CBS week in the ratings. Eight out of the top 10 scripted shows were on CBS, with ABC’s "Modern Family" and "Castle" the only two exceptions.

For the week, CBS averaged 10.7 million viewers in prime-time. ABC had 8.1 million, NBC had 7 million, and Fox had 4.5 million.

For the week of Nov. 12-18, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships (in millions):

1. NFL Football: Baltimore at Pittsburgh (NBC), 18.1

2. "The Big Bang Theory" (CBS), 17.6

3. "NCIS" (CBS), 17.0

4. "NCIS: Los Angeles" (CBS), 15.7

5. "Person of Interest" (CBS), 14.5

6. "60 Minutes" (CBS), 14.0

7. "Two and a Half Men" (CBS), 13.8

8. "Dancing With the Stars" (ABC), 13.7

9. "Sunday Night NFL Pre-Kick" (NBC), 12.9

10. "Criminal Minds" (CBS), 12.


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BANGOR, Maine -- Two news co-anchors for a Maine television station shocked viewers and colleagues by quitting on the air, later citing frustration with their management.

Cindy Michaels and Tony Consiglio announced their resignations at the end of Tuesday’s 6 p.m. newscast on WVII.

The two didn’t give specific reasons on the air for their sudden departure. Consiglio said that while they enjoyed reporting the news, "some recent developments have come to our attention, though, and departing together is the best alternative we can take."

Michaels said she and Consiglio were "are very sorry for having to say goodbye for now, but we’ll still be around." She plans to pursue a writing career and paint, and Consiglio said he would continue his career "in a different capacity."

Their boss said Wednesday they had been on their way out the door anyway. He said he was not surprised by the action they took.

"Sometimes people leave before they’re officially told to leave," said Mike Palmer, station vice president and general manager. He declined to discuss issues that may have caused disagreements but said, "There are things that they know."

The Associated Press left messages with Michaels and Consiglio. Both told the Bangor Daily News after their last newscast that they were frustrated with management and cited a dispute over journalistic practices.

Asked about reaction from viewers in the small market served by WVII, an ABC affiliate, Palmer said, "I have not heard from a single viewer."

But he said he had received about 20 applications for their jobs after posting them Tuesday night on an industry website.

"I’ve had people from all over the country send resumes and audition reels," Palmer said.

Consiglio, 28, started with WVII as a sports reporter in April 2006. Michaels, 46, was the news director and spent six years at the station.