More on the Ratings for Bob Hope’s 1950 Easter Special

In August I wrote about an article in The Chicago Daily Tribune that provided Nielsen, Videodex and The Pulse, Inc. television ratings for May 1950. I used Bob Hope’s Easter Special, titled “Star Spangled Revue,” to determine the period the ratings covered. According to the Nielsen list in the article, “Star Spangled Revue” ranked 3rd with a 57.6 rating. It wasn’t included in ratings from Videodex or The Pulse, Inc., however.

“Star Spangled Revue” was broadcast over NBC on Sunday, April 9th, 1950 from 5:30-7PM. According to an April 15th article in The New York Times, it drew a 49.4 Hooper rating, placing it second behind Milton Berle (Texaco Star Theater) in “program rankings” [1]. Whether this means “Star Spangled Revue” was second in the weekly Hooper ratings (running Monday, April 3rd through Sunday, April 9th) I can’t say. The article explained that a special Hooper rating was taken in New York City, Chicago, Cleveland and Washington, D.C. [2]. Furthermore, the share of the audience was an 88.2 and an average of five people were said to have been watching each set [3].

On April 23rd, Sidney Lohman reported in The New York Times that because of the impressive Hooper rating, “it is rumored that his sponsor will advance the date of the comedian’s next appearance, which was originally announced to be on Decoration Day. Now, it is said, Mr. Hope and company will do the second show on Mothers Day, May 14” [4]. That second special, also titled “Star Spangled Revue,” eventually aired on Saturday, May 27th. You can watch the first “Star Spangled Revue” at the online Museum of Broadcasting Communications Archives, although you’ll need to register (which is free).

Works Cited:
1 “Radio and Television.” New York Times. 15 Apr. 1950: 32.
2 Ibid.
3 Ibid.
4 Lohman, Sidney. “News of TV and Radio.” New York Times. 23 Apr. 1950: X9.