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‘Cosby Show’ Beats Spinoff Series for First Place

December 16, 1987

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Cliff Huxtable will have to have one of those family talks to explain to daughter Denise that there’s nothing personal in ″The Cosby Show″ pushing ″A Different World″ out of first place in the ratings.

″The Cosby Show″ won first place in the A.C. Nielsen Co. ratings for the week that ended Sunday. ″A Different World,″ the spinoff show following it on Thursday, was second. The shows tied for first in the previous week.

Lisa Bonet stars in ″A Different World,″ in which Denise Huxtable leaves home to enter Hillman College. The favored time slot has given the show good ratings and a large audience.

According to Nielsen, NBC remained the No. 1 network in a week that saw the regular series squeeze out original movies and Christmas specials. ABC’s ″The Barbara Walters Special,″ which tied for sixth place with CBS’ ″Murder, She Wrote,″ was the only special to make the top 10.

The CBS special movie ″Foxfire,″ an Appalachian tale starring Hume Cronyn, Jessica Tandy and John Denver, was 11th. CBS’ Dr. Seuss’ ″The Grinch Who Stole Christmas″ was 13th and CBS’ ″A Charlie Brown Christmas″ was 19th.

Other Christmas shows placed lower, as did two NBC movies and the CBS special ″Grammy Lifetime Awards.″

NBC won the week with an average prime-time rating of 15.6. CBS was second with 13.6 and ABC had a 12.4. The rating is a percentage of the nation’s 88.6 million households with television.

For the season to date, NBC remained ahead with 16.3, followed by CBS’ 13.7 and ABC’s 13.6.

Here are the week’s top 10: NBC’s ″The Cosby Show,″ NBC’s ″A Different World,″ CBS’ ″60 Minutes,″ NBC’s ″Cheers,″ NBC’s ″Night Court,″ ABC’s ″Barbara Walters Special″ and CBS’ ″Murder, She Wrote,″ tied, ABC’s ″Growing Pains,″ NBC’s ″The Golden Girls″ and ABC’s ″Who’s the Boss?″

The NBC movie ″The Father Clements Story,″ a true story of a Roman Catholic priest’s efforts to adopt a troubled youth, starring Louis Gossett Jr., Malcolm-Jamal Warner and Carroll O’Connor, was 23rd and NBC’s ″Eye on the Sparrow,″ starring Keith Carradine and Mare Winningham as a blind couple struggling to adopt children, was 35th. CBS’ ″Grammy Lifetime Awards″ was 60th.

CBS kept its lead among the evening news shows. CBS had a 11.6 rating, NBC 10.8 and ABC 10.5.

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