WBBM-TV continues to struggle in the ratings

This week’s issue of Crain’s Chicago Business details the continuing ratings struggle of CBS-owned WBBM-TV. Joe Ahern, who helped rocket competing WLS-TV into a ratings powerhouse in the ’80’s and ’90’s, is finding it a difficult task to repeat the same feat at WBBM. At issue is the station’s poorly-rated newscasts, which places behind not only ABC-owned WLS and NBC-owned […]

Chicago is "Family Guy’s" kind of town

It looks like Family Guy has succeeded where The Simpsons succeeded. According to numbers supplied by Twentieth Television (from a banner ad that appeared on TV Week’s website), Family Guy’s airing at 10 p.m. on WGN-TV finished number one in the time period between Sept. 17 and Sept. 21 among men 18-34 (2.2) and women 18-34 (2.6). It beat not […]

Time to do the "Chicago Huddle"

A new local TV show is debuting this weekend on ABC affiliate WLS-TV. Starting this Saturday night, the station will air a new sports-variety show called Chicago Huddle, which is being taped at ESPN Zone in Chicago’s River North area. The program will air Saturday nights after the station’s late news, at 11:05 p.m. (time approximate.) WLS-TV, ABC, and ESPN […]

WPWR’s fall schedule

We’re gonna turn it on… we’re gonna turn on the power… at Fox-owned WPWR this fall. But the power’s been off for a few years now at the station. Like other big-market MNT affiliates (WWOR and KCOP in N.Y. and L.A., respectively), WPWR has performed poorly, often placing last in total-day ratings among Chicago’s English and Spanish commercial TV stations. […]

"Wheel" spinning back to Chicago

Wheel of Fortune, syndication’s No. 1 show, is coming back to the Windy City to celebrate its 25th anniversary in nighttime. The long-running game show, hosted by South Lawndale/Little Village native and Columbia College alum Pat Sajak and letter-turner (or toucher)Vanna White, will be taping at Navy Pier in March of 2008 for three weeks’ worths of shows that will […]

The Viewer Alienation Plan

That’s what former Chicago Tribune television critic Steve Johnson said about WBBM-TV in the 1990s, for its tabloid-like newscasts. Today, the plan seems to be still pretty much intact. The CBS-owned turned in another pitiful performance in the recently concluded July sweeps according to Nielsen, with WFLD’s new 10 p.m. newscast tying it for third among adults 25-54 and finishing […]

Burns lawsuit nearing end

WBBM-TV anchor Diann Burns’ lawsuit against an contractor may be nearing an end. The anchor and her husband, Marc Watts, sued the contractor for shoddy work done to their $3 million home in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood – and because they were African-American. The contractor contersued for the racism allegations. The parties will meet with a Cook County judge on […]

Chicago’s weather wars

An article in Crain’s Chicago Business this week details the ongoing weather wars between Chicago’s television news operations. Competitors are taking aim at each other, particularly at Fox-owned WFLD-TV and new meteorologist Amy Freeze. The weathermen at other local stations are taking their shots at her and her station, with one weatherman saying that WFLD’s breaking into regular programming for […]

The Ten’s ratings problem exposing problems at another station

WFLD-TV’s new 10 p.m. newscast called The Ten is clearly struggling in the ratings – but the program is skewing younger, and is exposing problems at crosstown rival WBBM-TV with their 10 p.m. newscast. According to an article in the Sun-Times today, The Fox-owned station’s newscast has surprisingly beat the CBS-owned station’s late newscast in the household ratings on some […]

WLS-TV leader profiled by Sun-Times

Robert Feder of the Sun-Times interviews Emily Barr of ABC-owned powerhouse WLS-TV here in Chicago on her ten years at the station, and keeping it one of the highest-rated ABC stations in the country. She also talks about how the station is well-prepared for the transition from analog-to digital (if fact – it’s already there – the station was the […]

WLS-TV goes HiDef

Robert Feder is reporting today that WLS-TV in Chicago will air all of its weekday programming in High Definition, becoming the first station to do so. That includes all of its newscasts, and syndicated programming such as Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! Meanwhile, Feder finally mentioned the Third Coast Press’ FCC challenge toward Chicago’s television stations, which was soundly rejected […]