Nielsen Top 10, September 25th – October 1st, 1972

This is a little embarrassing but it turns out I only have the spottiest of information regarding Nielsen ratings for the third week of the 1972-1973 season, which ran from Monday, September 25th, 1972 through Sunday, October 1st, 1972. I can tell you that the top program was Love Story, broadcast as part of The ABC Sunday Night Movie, which drew a 42.3/62 Nielsen rating. It was at the time the highest-rated movie ever broadcast on television, topping NBC’s 1968 airing of The Birds, which had a 38.9 rating. Fourth was another movie, Cactus Flower, which was broadcast on Saturday, September 30th on NBC. I am looking in to filling out the rest of the Top Ten for this week and earlier weeks This week and the previous two weeks have been filled out; starting next week I will have all the programs in the Top Ten complete with ratings.

Once again I only have the Nielsen ratings for the first two programs but going forward I should have ratings for the entire Top Ten.

Thursday, December 24th, 2009 Update: Bill was kind enough to contribute the bulk of the Nielsen ratings for this week.

## Program Net Rating
1. ABC Sunday Night Movie ABC 42.3
2. All in the Family CBS 33.2
3. Marcus Welby, M.D. ABC 28.3
4. NBC Saturday Movie NBC 28.1
5. Bridget Loves Bernie CBS 25.5
6. The F.B.I. ABC 24.8
7. Sanford and Son NBC 24.7
8. Maude CBS 24.5
9. The ABC Tuesday Movie of the Week ABC 23.8
10. Ironside NBC 23.7


“Films Push Favorites to Low Banks.” Hartford Courant. 19 Oct. 1972: 40.

2 Replies to “Nielsen Top 10, September 25th – October 1st, 1972”

  1. I’m quite sure that most of the previous week’s “Top Ten” entries- CBS’ “ALL IN THE FAMILY”, “BRIDGET LOVES BERNIE”, “GUNSMOKE”, “MAUDE”, “HAWAII FIVE-O” and NBC’s “THE FLIP WILSON SHOW”- are here as well.

  2. Some additional ratings info on the movies:

    1. The ABC Sunday Night Movie – LOVE STORY (ABC) 42.3HH/62%
    4. NBC Saturday Night at the Movies – CACTUS FLOWER (NBC) 28.1HH/46%

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