Nielsen Top Ten, October 10th-23rd, 1966

Here are the first ten programs from the third Nielsen Television Index (NTI) for the 1966-1967 television season, covering the fifth and sixth weeks of the season, from Monday, October 10th, 1966 through Sunday, October 23rd, 1966. They were published in the November 14th, 1966 edition of Broadcasting. Note that the Nielsen ratings are the average of both week’s programming except in the case of special programming.

There were two specials in the top ten during these two weeks. The highest rated program was “Friends & Nabors,” an hour-long variety show starring Jim Nabors, Shirley Jones, Andy Griffith and others. It was broadcast by CBS from 9-10PM on Wednesday, October 12th and averaged a whopping 33.0 Nielsen rating. The other special in the top ten was a Bob Hope comedy special (Nielsen considered it an episode of The Bob Hope Show) titled “Murder at N.B.C.” It was shown on Wednesday, October 19th from 9-10PM on NBC.

The rest of the top ten was filled with regular weekly programs, including Bonanza, The Lucy Show and Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color. Installments of The CBS Friday Movie were Bye Bye Birdy on October 14th and One-Eyed Jacks on October 21st while on Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color viewers watched “The 101 Problems of Hercules” on Sunday, October 16th and “Gallagher Goes West (Part One)” on Sunday, October 23rd.

## Program Network Rating
1. Friends and Nabors (Special) CBS 33.0
2. Bonanza NBC 30.4
3. The Bob Hope Show (Special) NBC 27.7
4. The Andy Griffith Show CBS 27.2
  The Red Skelton Show CBS 27.2
6. The Lucy Show CBS 25.4
7. The Beverly Hillbillies CBS 24.7
8. The Jackie Gleason Show CBS 24.0
9. Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color NBC 22.5
10. The CBS Friday Movie CBS 22.4

“The Nielsens.” Broadcasting. 14 Nov. 1966: 72.

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One Reply to “Nielsen Top Ten, October 10th-23rd, 1966”

  1. “FRIENDS & NABORS”, telecast in the same time period usually occupied by “GREEN ACRES” and “GOMER PYLE, U.S.M.C.” (and certainly sustained by General Foods, who was the primary sponsor of both shows), was virtually the genesis of the show that succeeded “GOMER PYLE” in the fall of 1969, “THE JIM NABORS HOUR”, which proved once and for all that Jim was more than just a “hick actor”.

    “MURDER AT NBC” was one of Bob Hope’s weirdest “book specials”. He played an “evil genius”, ‘Von Smirtch’, whose dastardly plan is to “shrink” the U.S. small enough so that he can virtually tow it away for himself! Lots of cheesy video effects and guest appearances (mostly NBC stars and Bob’s good friends) by Don Adams, Johnny Carson, Jimmy Durante, Milton Berle, Red Buttons, Wally Cox, Bill Dana, Rowan & Martin, Bill Cosby, et. al.

    CBS’ Monday night schedule from 8:30 through 9:30- Lucy and Andy Griffith- Red Skelton on Tuesdays at 8:30, and “THE BEVERLY HILLBILLIES” on Wednesdays at 8:30 [following “LOST IN SPACE”] was one reason why the network had a comfortable lead in the “Top Ten” during the 1966-’67 season. You can’t get more “comfortable” than watching them…

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