13.6 MILLION WATCH LAKERS' DEBACLE

The NBA Finals closer between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Boston Celtics -- a game that must have been painful for Lakers' fans to watch (the L.A. team was brutally trounced 131-92), drew strong ratings despite the blowout. The ABC telecast averaged a 7.3 rating and a 12 share during the primetime period from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m., edging out the return of America's Got Talent on NBC, which posted a 7.1/12. (At its primetime peak at 10:30 p.m. the game drew 13.61 million viewers.) Basketball was also the name of the game last week as three televised games wound up as the most-watched television shows of the week. Nevertheless, CBS prevailed again among overall households, averaging a 4.9 rating and a 9 share. ABC and Fox tied with a 4.3/8, while NBC trailed with a 3.8/7.

The top ten shows of the week according to Nielsen Research:

1. NBA Finals - Game 5, ABC, 10.2/19; 2. NBA Finals - Game 3, ABC, 9.2/16; 3. NBA Finals - Game 4, ABC, 8.7/16; 4. NCIS, CBS, 6.9/12; 4. Two and a Half Men, CBS, 6.9/11; 6. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CBS, 6.6/11; 7. 48 Hours Mystery (Tuesday), CBS, 6.5/11; 8. Million Dollar Password, CBS, 6.3/12; 9. CSI: NY, CBS, 6.1/11; 10. CSI: Miami, CBS, 5.9/10.

WEEDS REACHES A HIGH

Showtime's comedy series Weeds was positively smoking this week as its season debut at 10:00 p.m. Monday attracted 1.3 million viewers -- the biggest audience ever to watch any telecast on the channel. A repeat at 11:00 p.m. drew an additional 406,000, according to Nielsen Media Research. Meanwhile Lifetime Cable Channel reported that its Army Wives was the highest-rated show on basic cable last week.

CBS TURNS DOTSPOTTER.COM INTO THEINSIDER.COM

CBS has taken over the celebrity website Dotspotter.com and will rebrand it with the name of its syndicated celebrity show The Insider. TheInsider.com borrows the look and feel of Dotspotter.com but lacks the no-holds-barred attitude of rival celebrity blogs like TMZ.com and PerezHilton.com. CBS reportedly paid $10 million for the website last October, saying at the time that its model would not be the successful gossip sites but rather its own CBSSports.com.

RIVERS REMOVED FROM U.K. TALK SHOW

Joan Rivers was apparently too loose for the producers of Loose Women, a British daytime talk show. Discussing her role as a red-carpet interviewer, Rivers said that most of the celebrities she interviews are cordial to her but every once in a while, she said, she gets one like Russell Crowe, who is -- "Get ready to bleep this" -- at which point she used two verboten terms to describe Crowe. Other members of the panel reacted in astonishment to Rivers' remarks, and one of them reminded her that the show was live and that her words could not be bleeped. When the show resumed after a commercial break, Rivers was gone. On Tuesday, she issued an apology for her remarks, but by then the TV segment had gone viral. (It can be viewed at http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=8712893769503480980&q=%22Joan+Rivers%22&ei=wBNZSPHoOY3sqgPWhNHuDg.)

Cinemark Movie Club
Brian B.