Including a last-minute, preholiday stroll along the Ratings Rialto (all decked out in Christmas lights, with a Santa Claus at every corner), which reveals that:
The late-afternoon Washington Redskins-St. Louis Cardinals NFL season finale on Channel 9 Saturday averaged a 36.6 Nielsen rating and a 64 percent audience share . . .
The game runover, until 7:15 p.m., enabled "Agronsky & Co.," which followed immediately on Nine, to rack up its highest numbers of the year, 19.6/36 (which tapered off to a 13.7/26 in the second 15 minutes) . . .
The runover didn't help Channel 4's revised programming schedule at 7, however . . .
"The McLaughlin Group" did only a 3.7/7, although "The George Michael/Joe Theismann Redskin Report" at 7:30, which included live coverage from the St. Louis game site, jumped to 7.4/14 . . .
And the NFL runover sure didn't help Channel 7's "Point to Point" at 7 p.m., which did only a 1.6/3 during its half hour . . .
Earlier in the day, the NFL game on Channel 4 between Pittsburgh and the New York Giants averaged a 17.2/41 . . .
And the Maryland-Syracuse Cherry Bowl matchup on Seven between 1 and 4 p.m. averaged an 8.1/18 . . .
On Sunday, the battle of the movie reruns resulted in a timely victory for the Christmas Spirit, as George C. Scott's version of "A Christmas Carol" on CBS averaged a 31 share in Nielsen's 12 big cities from 8 to 10 p.m., losing nothing in the last hour to either "The Toy" on ABC or "Conan the Barbarian" on NBC . . .
"The Toy" averaged a 29 share from 9 to 11, while "Conan" did only a 23 . . .
Speaking of shares, ABC's "Dynasty" last Wednesday recorded its lowest share in two years in the national Nielsen count. . .
The slipping soap got a 20.0 rating and a 30 share . . . down from the previous week's 21.4/33 . . .
More Stocking Stuffers
Sometime in March, there'll be a new entry in the competitive local TV market, when Channel 50 switches from the Super TV pay service to a full commercial schedule, with the call letters WFTY . . .
The Hill Broadcasting-owned station recently named Larry Maloney as president and general manager and Bill Spitzer as vice president and station manager . . .
Both are Channel 5/Metromedia graduates . . .
Meanwhile, Allan Ginsberg, former WTTG vice president and general manager, who served as consultant to set up the new operation, has been named president of Hill Broadcasting, which operates out of Dallas . . .
Maloney said yesterday that "we're still in a buying mode" and is therefore reluctant to spell out specific details about the movies, cartoons and network reruns being acquired for WFTY . . .
"It will be a traditional independent TV operation," Maloney said, "with morning and afternoon children's shows and a movie commitment in weeknight prime time and an especially heavy movie schedule on Saturdays and Sundays. The off-network shows would air nightly between 5 and 9 p.m. before the movie schedule" . . .
Maloney said he'd been too busy in the 10 days since the management team moved in to contact all local cable systems but that WFTY will definitely be on the Media General Fairfax system . . .
Maloney said that meanwhile, STV will continue its scrambled signal pay service starting at 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays on a month-to-month basis until the final decision on start-up of the commercial operation is made . . .
Maloney said the new station will be competing directly for audiences now tuning in to WTTG and WDCA when it gets on the air . . .
"I'm not saying we'll be on the air March 1," he added. "It could be March 29. It's too soon to say right now" . . .
Meanwhile, there have reportedly been challenges to the FCC ruling giving new owners the license to start operating Channel 14 on a regular basis. Originally, that station had hoped to be on the air in March, too . . .
And while you've got your new 1986 Airwaves Calendars open (aren't those teddy bears on the cover cute, TV Column fans?), you might want to mark down Jan. 12 . . .
That's when Gregory (Gonzo) Harrison will suffer a stroke on CBS' "Trapper John, M.D." and make his final appearance at San Francisco Memorial Hospital . . .
A little cross-modal interference in yesterday's column yesterday gave us the wrong substitute anchors for "Good Morning America" this week. But then you've probably already noticed that Kathleen Sullivan and Steve Bell are doing the honors . . .
Jeanne Meserve and Barry Serafin are doing the very early ABC news show this week . . .
John Severino, ousted earlier this year as president of ABC Television, has been named vice president and general manager of KABC, the network's Los Angeles station . . .
Severino, who most recently has been senior vice president of the five ABC owned-and-operated TV stations, ran the station from 1974 to 1981 . . .
It was his successful performance at KABC at that time -- particularly in the news area -- that earned him the TV presidency in 1981 . . .
NBC announced yesterday that a second edition of "Missing: Have You Seen This Person?" will air on the network the night of Wednesday, Jan. 22 . . .
The one-hour special will re-create the circumstances surrounding the disappearances of adults and children . . .
The first program in the series, aired April 29, included the story of Kathy (16 years old) and Debbie (13) Caruso and the seven-year search for them undertaken by their mother, Janet Hicks . . .
Within 24 hours of the telecast the girls were located and reunited with their mother . . . They will appear on the January broadcast . . .
Merry Christmas!!! . . .