Posted on Tue, Oct. 01, 2002
By Gail Shister
The debut of CBS drama Hack rolled to impressive numbers on Friday.
Starring David Morse as a disgraced Philly cop turned vigilante cabbie and Andre Braugher as his former partner, Hack easily won the 9-to-10 p.m. time slot nationally, drawing 12.9 million viewers.
A two-hour Dateline NBC had 10.4 million, followed by the second episode of Fox's John Doe (7.0 million) and ABC's That Was Then (4.3 million).
For the record, Reba, on the tiny WB, delivered 500,000 more viewers than ABC's Then. (Bah-bye.)
Hack, shot entirely in our town, increased CBS's 9 p.m. Friday viewership by 85 percent compared with a year ago, when That's Life (that's gone) moved to that slot.
"We're very happy," says CBS rep Chris Ender. "It's a very strong opening on a night in which we didn't have a lot of success a year ago. That's not easy to do."
Backed by scads of promotion, Hack had six million viewers more than its 8 p.m. lead-in, 48 Hours Investigates. More than four million of them bailed when CBS's Robbery Homicide Division premiered at 10.
Want more? Hack delivered the network's best 9 p.m. Friday figures for first-run, regularly scheduled programming since CSI: Crime Scene Investigation on Dec. 12.
Locally, Hack averaged more than 440,000 viewers on KYW. With a 15.6 rating and 24 percent audience share, Philly's rating was the highest among all 53 metered markets. Sacramento, Calif.; Pittsburgh; Indianapolis; and New Orleans rounded out the top five.
Hack ran out of gas in Cleveland, finishing dead last.