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Kilborn's First Week a Slow One

At the end of its first week of test
broadcasts, Twentieth's The Kilborn File
averaged a 0.8 rating/2 share in the weighted metered markets, according to Nielsen
Media Research, down 56% from its lead-in and from year-ago time period
averages, which were each a 1.8/4.

Fox TV stations are testing the show,
starring former late-night host Craig Kilborn, in seven of its markets for six
weeks this summer. Five of those markets are airing the show in access, which
is a first for comedy talk. It's an idea that was shopped to stations when
Conan O'Brien was looking for a place to land after he left NBC last winter.

Fox picked a challenging time to debut
the show, considering that it was the week before a long holiday weekend in the
heat of summer, when levels of households using television are at annual lows.
Fox also is swapping strong sitcoms -- Sony's Seinfeld and Twentieth's own The
- in six out of seven markets during the test. Audiences tend to
be loyal viewers of their favorite sitcoms, no matter how many times they've
seen every episode. 

On WNYW New York at 7 p.m., The Kilborn File matched the show's all-market
performance, averaging a 0.8/2, down 56% from lead-in and 50% from last year
when WNYW was airing The Simpsons in
the slot.

On KTTV Los Angeles at 6:30 p.m., the
show averaged a 0.7/1, a 53% decline from its lead in and a 59% decline from
last summer when KTTV was airing Warner Bros.' TMZ.

On WTXF Philadelphia at 7 p.m., the
show averaged a 0.6/1, down 67% from its lead-in and down 70% from last
summer's runs of The Simpsons.

On WFXT Boston at 7 p.m., the show
averaged a 0.4/1, down 64% from its lead-in and down 75% from last summer when
the station was airing Seinfeld.

On WJBK Detroit at 7:30 p.m., the show
averaged a 1.1/2, down 56% from its lead-in and down 45% from last year. WJBK
also aired Seinfeld last summer.

On KSAZ Phoenix at 10:30 p.m., the show
averaged a 1.1/3, down 54% from its lead-in and down 27% from Seinfeld last year.

On KTBC Austin at 10 p.m., the show
averaged a 1.2/2, down 66% from its lead-in and down 68% from last summer's The Simpsons.

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.