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‘Monk,’ ‘Psych’ Return USA To Top

USA Network viewers can’t get enough of that quirky, obsessive compulsive detective Monk.

The Jan. 11 season-six premiere of the Tony Shalhoub-starrer drew 5.6 million viewers, the best showing for a Monk premiere installment since drawing 6.3 million viewers for the debut episode of the second half of the show’s fourth season in July 2005.

The episode, which featured an appearance by Deal Or No Deal game show host Howie Mandel, eclipsed the 4.8 million and 5.1 million viewers the show’s split-season-five premieres garnered in January and July 2007 respectively, according to Nielsen Media Research.

USA also scored a strong ratings performance on Jan. 11 from the third-season premiere of Psych, which drew 4.6 million viewers. The dramedy’s performance was its best since it drew 6 million viewers to its pilot in July 2006.

Monk and Psych, which will be repurposed on NBC, USA's NBC Universal broadcast brethren,beginning March 2, ranked first and second for the week of Jan. 7 to Jan. 13, helping the "characters" network win the weekly primetime ratings race, according to a Disney ABC Cable Networks analysis of Nielsen Media Research data, based on live, plus same-day-viewing basis. USA averaged a 2.3 household rating for the week.

Disney Channel, which pinned down the fifth and sixth most-watched shows for the week with a Jan. 13 Hannah Montana episode and theatrical Herbie: Full Loaded, respectively, finished second among 

basic-cable networks with a 2.0 rating.

Fox News (1.7 rating), TNT (1.6) and TBS (1.5) rounded out the top five for the week. Nick at Nite, Lifetime Television and Hallmark Channel were tied for sixth, each with a 1.3 average. A&E was next with a 1.2 mark, while Spike TV and TruTV, nee Court TV, finished in the 10th slot, both earning a 1.1 average for the period.

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.