'High School Musical 2' Rocks Out to a Basic-Cable Record

The numbers were sunny for Ashley Tisdale and Disney Channel's
The numbers were sunny for Ashley Tisdale and Disney Channel's "High School Musical 2." (Adam Larkey -- The Associated Press)

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By Lisa de Moraes
Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Too-tanned Troy and the rest of the "High School Musical 2" gang burned up the small screen last week.

Here's a look at the week's encores and tomatoes:

WINNERS

"High School Musical 2." A staggering 17.24 million viewers -- the biggest audience ever on basic-cable TV -- caught the unveiling of Disney Channel's sequel to last year's whodathunk hit, trouncing all other comers on cable and broadcast for the week. The No. 2 show, NBC's "America's Got Talent," clocked only 10.8 million. Zac Efron (Troy) and ensemble were tops among kids, tweens and teens, as well as chicks ages 18 to 49. Among fangirls, "HSM2" did Super Bowl-like numbers: 81 percent of tweener girls who were watching television from 8 to 10:05 p.m. Friday were watching "HSM2," catapulting Disney Channel to the No. 3 network for the week. It beat ABC, NBC and CW and nearly tied Fox, which averaged 5.97 million viewers, compared with Disney's 5.8 million.) Efron had a great week: Over the weekend his flick "Hairspray" became only the third recent movie musical -- and the 10th ever -- to cross the $100 million mark in domestic box office, also fueled by fangirls, reported Variety.

"Ice Road Truckers." Sunday's season finale hauled in 4.8 million viewers -- the biggest audience in History Channel, um, history. During its 10-episode first season, an average of 3.2 million, including the curious and the incredulous, tuned in.

"Power of 10." CBS is adding a second, Tuesday broadcast of the Drew Carey-hosted prime-time gamer for the rest of the summer. "10" debuted on a Tuesday and logged more than 9 million viewers, but fell to just under 8 million on Wednesday, its regular night. This past Wednesday, "10" averaged 7.7 million viewers.

"Hell's Kitchen." The cooking-is-hell series's season finale served up its biggest audience ever, 9.7 million viewers.

"So You Think You Can Dance." The two-hour season finale won Thursday night when 9.6 million tuned in -- on par with last year's final night, when about 9.4 million tuned in to its two hours.

LOSERS

"Painkiller Jane." Sci Fi has put "Painkiller" out of our misery. Its most recent Friday telecast scared up just 880,000 viewers; overall it averaged 955,000.

"The Company." Over the course of its three two-hour episodes, this TNT miniseries snagged a lackluster 2.3 million viewers but lost viewers each week; Sunday's finale mustered an average of 1.9 million.

ABC primetime. The Disney-owned broadcast network continues to struggle this summer, last week posting an average of just 4.4 million viewers. Its most watched show, "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition," clocked just 7.6 million viewers and ranked No. 18 for the week. On the bright side for Disney, everyone else was watching Disney-owned Disney Channel.

The week's 10 most watched telecasts, in order, were: Disney Channel's Friday 8 p.m. premiere of "High School Musical 2"; NBC's "America's Got Talent"; Disney Channel's Friday 10:20 p.m. "Hannah Montana"; CBS's "60 Minutes"; NBC's "Singing Bee"; Fox's "Hell's Kitchen" and "So You Think You Can Dance" finales; and CBS's "CSI," "Two and a Half Men" and "Without a Trace."


© 2007 The Washington Post Company

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