April 19, 2012 8:54am PT by Marisa Guthrie
Official: 'Good Morning America' Snaps 'Today's' 852-Week Winning Streak
It’s official: After 852 weeks and more than 16 years, Good Morning America has finally broken Today’s winning streak.
The ABC morning show drew 5.17 million viewers for the week ending April 13 compared with Today’s 5.13 million. That’s a difference of 31,000 viewers and snaps one of the longest winning streaks in modern TV history. ABC News president Ben Sherwood, who was the executive producer of GMA from 2004-06 before returning to ABC News in December 2010, noted that the show’s "loyal and growing" audience "motivates us every single morning."
“Of course, we congratulate our friends at Today for the greatest winning streak in broadcasting history and for their excellence and leadership during this historic run,” said Sherwood. "It’s a special day for ABC News, and, after a proper celebration 852 weeks in the making, we'll get right back to work to be ready tomorrow to help GMA viewers start their day with a rewarding experience and big-picture understanding of the world."
Today still bested GMA in the 25-54 demographic upon which ad rates are calculated: Today pulled in 2.23 million viewers compared with GMA's 1.97 million.
But GMA bested its rival twice during a week when longtime Today anchor Matt Lauer was on vacation. The ABC broadcast prevailed by 419,000 viewers on Wednesday, April 11, and by 359,000 on Friday, April 13.
In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, NBC News president Steve Capus noted that a one-week win does not a streak make.
"I really don’t think anybody in the audience at home is on the edge of their seats wondering how this is going to go," he said. "If we continue to keep our eye on the ball and perform at a level that the audience has come to expect every single morning -- and I would suggest we have -- then I think that’s what really matters."