Originally created 01/15/99

NBC gains top ratings with 'Providence'



NEW YORK -- Providence was the word at NBC, as Providence premiered with heavenly ratings and the network won the week overall.

NBC may have a much-needed hit on its hands with this replacement for its instant Friday failure Trinity. On the opener, Providence scored eighth place with a 13.1 household rating. It was the best premiere showing by an NBC drama since ER in September 1994, the network said.

Another new show, Fox's Eddie Murphy-created The PJs, took 13th place with a 12.6 rating in its Sunday preview airing, to become Sunday's most-watched show on any network. This week the animated comedy settles in its regular Tuesday slot.

In prime time for the week of Jan. 4-10, NBC logged a winning 9.8 rating and 15 share, according to Nielsen Media Research figures released Tuesday. CBS edged out ABC for second place, with a 9.5 rating and 15 share. ABC had a 9.4 rating and 15 share. Fox (programming 15 hours) had a 7.7 rating and 12 share.

Prime-time ratings as compiled by Nielsen Media Research for Jan. 4-10. Top 20 listings include the week's ranking, with rating for the week and season-to-date rankings in parentheses.

An X in parentheses denotes one-time-only presentations. The rating is the percentage of the nation's estimated 99.4 million TV homes. Each ratings point represents 994,000 households.

1.(1)ER, NBC, 21.7, 21.6 million homes.

2.(2)Friends, NBC, 17.6, 17.5 million homes.

3.(X)Fiesta Bowl: Florida State vs. Tennessee, ABC, 17.2, 17.1 million homes.

4.(3)Frasier, NBC, 16.9, 16.8 million homes.

5.(X)Just Shoot Me, NBC, 15.7, 15.6 million homes.

6.(4)Veronica's Closet, NBC, 14.7, 14.6 million homes.

7.(X)Fox NFC Playoff: Arizona at Minnesota, Fox, 14.5, 14.4 million homes.

8.(9)Providence, NBC, 13.1, 13.0 million homes.

9.People's Choice Awards: 25th Annual, CBS, 12.9, 12.8 million homes.

9.(8)60 Minutes, CBS, 12.9, 12.8 million homes.

11.(X)Fiesta Bowl: Pregame, ABC, 12.8, 12.7 million homes.

12.Dateline NBC-Friday, NBC, 12.7, 12.6 million homes.

13.(X)PJS-Preview, Fox, 12.6, 12.5 million homes.

14.(7)Touched by an Angel, CBS, 12.5, 12.4 million homes.

14.The X-Files, Fox, 12.5, 12.4 million homes.

16.(10)The CBS Movie Special: Sleepless in Seattle, CBS, 12.0, 11.9 million homes.

16.Home Improvement, ABC, 12.0, 11.9 million homes.

18.20/20-Friday, ABC, 11.9, 11.8 million homes.

19.Dharma & Greg, ABC, 11.8, 11.7 million homes.

20.The Simpsons, Fox, 11.6, 11.5 million homes.

21.The Drew Carey Show, ABC, 11.5

22.Law and Order, NBC, 11.4

23.20/20-Wednesday, ABC, 11.2

24.NYPD Blue, ABC, 10.7

25.Diagnosis Murder, CBS, 10.5

26.Dateline NBC-Tuesday, NBC, 10.1

26.Two Guys a Girl and a Pizza Place, ABC, 10.1

28.Walker, Texas Ranger, CBS, 10.0

29.(X)Fox NFC Playoff: Arizona at Minnesota, Fox, 9.9

29.The Hughleys, ABC, 9.9

29.Just Shoot Me, NBC, 9.9

29.The Practice, ABC, 9.9

29.Spin City, ABC, 9.9

34.Whose Line Is It Anyway? ABC, 9.8

35.Dateline NBC-Monday, NBC, 9.6

36.The CBS Tuesday Movie: In My Sister's Shadow, CBS, 9.5

36.Dateline NBC-Wednesday, NBC, 9.5

38.The Wonderful World of Disney: The New Swiss Family Robinson, ABC, 9.3

39.Everybody Loves Raymond, CBS, 9.1

39.Sabrina the Teenage Witch, ABC, 9.1

41.Candid Camera, CBS, 9.0

41.Kids say the Darndest Things, CBS, 9.0

41.Will & Grace, NBC, 9.0

44.Homicide: Life on the Street, NBC, 8.9

45.Promised Land, CBS, 8.8