We'd like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Cartoon Network on becoming the top rated cable network for primetime during the end of August. Earlier this year Toonami was the network's highest rated block (and it's still very strong) but the evening block of new programming slowly overtook it. In July, primetime hit an all time high of 2.0--making it the second most watched cable network (with USA at #1). As the Summer dragged on, USA slid while TBS rose. By August, TBS and the Cartoon Network were neck-in-neck for 1st place with a 2.1 rating. At the end of August, for one week, the Cartoon Network, for the first time ever, was the number one primetime cable network.
Fans may be interested to know that the win is a bittersweet one for Ted Turner who has long lamented that while he's proud of the Cartoon Network, he wishes that his Cable News Network (CNN) were as successful.
(The ratings were a real wake-up call for Nickelodeon which had been slaughtering broadcast networks--only to discover that it had been superceded on it's own turf [ages 2-11]. Nickelodeon had long been holding out against adventure & super hero programming but is now seriously looking at such projects.)
Interesting to note, even though the Cartoon Network is now highly rated, none of it's shows ever seems to make it into the top 10. In other words, all of it's programming is at such a consistent high (but not top 10) level that they regularly finish as one of the top rated networks. So while other companies may talk about schedule synergy, with the Cartoon Network it's actually true. One of the best examples is the network's presentation of "Sailor Moon" which helped attract new viewers to their primetime schedule (especially to "The Power Puff Girls").
Disappointing for the SOS (and leaked to us by advertisers) is that while the new episodes of "Sailor Moon S" were rated good, the results have clearly not been spectacular. (We believe that the change of Voice Artists may have been the major contributing factor. The loss of the DiC music cues may have played a part as well.) To help "Sailor Moon" the network moved the series from 4:00pm EDT & PDT to 4:30pm in September. There are more available viewers later in the day but the series usually does not perform well against competition. However, we agree that this move is worth a try.
Starting on October 20 the Cartoon Network will present Toonami Movies which will air every Friday night. Toonami Movies will include anime features which have been based on the different series presented on the network. And, contrary to what you may read elsewhere, the Cartoon Network still has no plans to present any of the Sailor Moon features. The network would still like to present the features but the earliest any of them could be scheduled would be in 2001. We encourage the network to acquire the features but remind fans that they should purchase them for Home Video. The more Pioneer Sailor Moon tapes & DVDs fans purchase, the better the chances of Pioneer creating the versions we'd all like for "Sailor Stars" (original flavor & DiC flavor).