Thanks to the venerable "Monk" and the upstart "White Collar," USA averaged 3.09 million prime-time viewers during the week that ended Nov. 22 to take the top spot among ad-supported cable networks. But ESPN, with its lineup of NFL football, reigned supreme in the advertiser-coveted demographic groups of adults 25-to-54, 18-to-49 and 18-to-34.
Stars of USA's "Monk" will join with Bayer Aspirin on a 30-second, public service announcement about the importance of living a heart-healthy lifestyle. The spots, which begin running Friday, honor Stanley Kamel, the former "Monk" actor who died of heart disease in 2008.
USA Network won its fourth straight prime-time ratings race of the year by amassing an average of 3.15 million viewers during the week ended Feb. 1, according to Nielsen data. The network -- with fresh episodes of "Monk," "Burn Notice" and "Psych" -- had eight of the top 10 programs on ad-supported cable during that week.
NBC has announced an aggressive 52-week slate of prime-time programming, and cable will be a big part of it. The network, which, like USA, is part of NBC Universal, will repurpose episodes of USA's "Monk" and "Nashville Star" in the summer of 2009.
USA President Doug Herzog, responsible for the hits "The Dead Zone" and "Monk," is leading the network to ratings success, a report says. Herzog reportedly is pushing the network toward hourlong dramas.