Ratings: Good Morning America Beats Today For First Time in 16 Years

I see an extended overseas assignment in Ann Curry‘s future.

For the first time in more than 16 years, Good Morning America appears to have succeeded in finally beating NBC’s Today show in the ratings.

According to the New York Times, GMA averaged 5,147,000 total viewers last week to Today‘s 5,134,000 viewers.

Today — which it should be noted was without its vacationing leading man Matt Lauer last week — still prevailed among adults 25-54 (the demographic coveted by advertisers), but the overall viewer win represents a huge symbolic victory for GMA. It’s also likely to further fuel speculation that Curry’s days as Matt Lauer’s polarizing co-host are numbered.

Thoughts? Would dumping Curry help put Today back on top?

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49 Comments
  1. After watching Today every day for over 10 years I finally ditched it for GMA about 10 months ago. Today was turning into an annoying tabloid show that went more for shock value (look at this near miss car crash 15 times in a row!!!) than actually reporting news. Plus, Curry is just awful. GMA is better (but not great) maybe it’s time for CBSMorningWhatverItsCalled?

    • Kim R says:

      I also watched Today for many years but switched to GMA last year as well. I totally agree that Today is turning into a tabloid show. I feel badly for Ann. She is much more suited to report the news than in an interviewer position. They need someone like Katie or Meredith next to Matt for more of a balance. Katie was fantastic with George on GMA. I also got tired of seeing Donald T or Kate Goselin as well. :)

      • bill blackburn says:

        GMA is the background for our current president. I have watched both morning shows but after about 20 minutes, I push the off switch. BWB

  2. ChynnaBlue says:

    Or maybe just don’t let Sarah Pahlin host?

    • AJ says:

      Today Show won the week with Palin hosting for a day. It was last week when Matt was on vacation that GMA won.

    • terri says:

      Amen! I think they were trying to drive me away. And no more Duggars or Kardashians! Today has turned into one long commercial for their affiliate shows. But Ann polarizing? Please.

  3. BC485 says:

    Everyone is quick to blame Curry… what about the duds that filled in for Matt last week? David Gregory and Carl Quintanilla are probably nice people, but neither is cut out for anchoring the Today show…

    • Jen says:

      David Gregory is fun but Carl Q. is not that great. Matt just doesn’t seem to like his job anymore. Maybe it’s time to move Lester Holt over to weekdays?

    • RANDY says:

      YOU ARE CORECT, HOWEVER, ANN CURRY IS TERRABLE, SHE COMES ACROSS AS A REAL PHONEY. THEY SHOULD DUMP HER AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

  4. Jen says:

    I loved GMA when Katie was substituting last week. Robin is OK. Sadly, there is no chemistry between Matt and Ann…and I do feel sorry for Ann..she has paid her dues there.

    • Kim R says:

      I totally agree about Katie on GMA. She was great with George and the rest. I like Robin but Katie really shone. I feel badly for Ann as well. I knew it was not going to go well when they moved her into Meredith’s spot. I think she’s better delivering the news. :)

  5. Larry says:

    I don’t knowif the problem is Ann Curry -but the Today show is just too dang long. Four hours of morning television -it kind of drags. People are sampling ABC morning -liking the more tightened schedule and probably staying. Matt not being there logically had something to do with it -but I think overall people are tired of the Today show overkill.

  6. Jill says:

    I stopped watching Today when Ann took Meredith’s seat. I watch GMA, even though Robin is grating for me, she’s better than Ann. I think Today needs to get Erica Hill from CBS & make her Matt’s co-anchor. Even the CBS Morning show is better than Today.

    • dan says:

      Erica Hill was the best thing during the last incarnation of “The Early Show” on CBS and now she is doing great with Charley Rose and Gayle King on “CBS This Morning.” I did not have high hopes for the newest version of CBS’s morning show, but I have to say that I’m lovin’ it! It isn’t tabloidy at all and there is a nice rapport between the anchors, the reporters who come “on set” and the guests. Congrats CBS on finally getting it right. Now they need more people to check it out because I understand the ratings are flat (maybe even lower) than last year at this time.

      • jll says:

        I agree completely!!! if you want a well done morning news program watch CBS!!!

        • Rjrtist says:

          Erica Hill looks lost in conversation when Charlie and Gayle are commenting on a news story. She looks like a deer caught in the headlights.

      • linda says:

        After thirty years as a loyal Today Show viewer, I just could not take the inane, stupid stories they waste all morning on. It has nothing to do with Ann Curry, but I am watching Charlie Rose and actually feeling a bit informed again. Not everyone thinks the Kardashians are the most important people on the planet. I tried to check for a moment this week and they were covering a custody battle over a dog. CBS is doing a great show right now!

      • Joan T says:

        I wish Erica Hill could co-anchor with Matt Lauer, I think they would be a great team like Anderson and Erica at CNN was or as Matt and Katie were. I feel Erica’s great personality is so restricted on the CBS morning show.

  7. KSM says:

    I watch the Today show because local NBC news has better weather and traffic for me. The only time I switched was when Palin was hosting. I wasn’t a fan of GMA… or the local ABC weather and traffic. Ann isn’t that great, but I think it’s funny to watch her try and save herself.

  8. Brad says:

    What happens when Matt and Ann are there, that is the real test not when one or both of the prime players are on vacation or assignment. Blaming Ann is not right.

  9. Bob Lozano says:

    I don’t watch either network (nor would I ever). I’m a battle-tested CBS fan for life!

  10. Lindsey says:

    I don’t think the problem is Ann….I think that as a whole, Natalie is the only one who doesn’t fit it chemistry wise…she is too unsure of herself – not very able to laugh at herself. I think if they changed Savannah to Natalies position, they could bring back some of the playful fun that they used to have. Savannah is a much better fit in the core group of Matt, Al and Ann.

  11. Chrispy says:

    Time to get rid of Ann Curry. She has no chemistry with Matt, constantly stumbles over her lines, and has a grating style of interviewing (with hushed tones and saccharine-like sympathy). She’s a bad fit for the co-host job. Also agreed that Natalie is a bit stiff.

    What this really proves is how valuable Meredith was to the show (and Katie before her, of course), and how going after Meredith to replace Katie was an excellent move. That was a seamless transition. Ann got the job because of seniority, not because she was the right fit. And that’s too bad.

  12. Linderella says:

    I watched when Katie and Matt were together but was soooooo glad when she left. Meredith showed a more playful side to Matt (who knew?) and they were great together. Ann is great with the news but just not a great co-host – her biggest problem being speed talking – take a breath, Ann! (I did notice she slowed it down for a few days then popped right back in the speed lane.) Savannah is great and I agree about Natalie. It’s as though Natalie can’t believe she’s at the cool kids table. If they got rid of the Duggers and the fourth hour it would be better. I watched ABC before Matt came on board and I don’t plan to go back. Ann is a reporter – if Today was a news show she would be a better fit – but it’s more entertainment than hard reporting. I think they’ll figure it out. I just hope they don’t treat Ann badly. She doesn’t deserve it. The best thing about Today? Al Roker!

  13. april-ann says:

    Ann Curry is beautiful and smart, but IMO lacks the on-air charisma needed to be one of the lead hosts of a network morning show. I loved Matt and Katie on there together, and also Matt and Meredith. Both ladies left of their own volition. I’d love it if either were to return since Matt has recently signed a long term contract. But Katie has her own show coming up on ABC and I doubt Meredith would return unless she’s really bored at home (lol, I know she has other irons in the fire and keeps busy).

  14. Royce says:

    Timve to get rid of ANn Curry sooooon!!!!

  15. Christen says:

    i’m not a fan of ann curry at all! love matt, always! i wish meredith wouldn’t have left. loved when katie was on, too.

  16. Marco says:

    I switched to GMA last week after 15 years of watching “Today.” I like the Katie-Matt pairing but loved the Meredith-Matt pairing even more. I was disappointed when Meredith left. I’ve given Anna chance–I think she’s a good journalist but has no charisma–so it’s time to change the channel. “Today” needs to bring in someone who can complement Lauer rather than fade into the background behind him.

  17. J V Smith says:

    I too have found myself watching ABC in the morning. I still enjoy Matt Lauer and loved Ann Curry until she took over the co-host position. She is different now and it shows. I only watch the first hour because anything after that is fluff.

    • Helen Boyle says:

      Is anybody at NBC listening when we talk about FLUFF!That the problem along with the hectice pace. Al R did a segment with several children asking the questions of an award winning children’s author. Al had to interrupt the author’s reply to the children -Repeatedly to hurry things up. If you have a guest, The producers should give the guest the dignity of providing their comments without the constant rushing. Too much rushing results in any unsatisfactory segment.The problem was not Al. The problem is not Ann.

  18. Sarah says:

    Honestly, I think Ann is nice but she is better for the hard hitting news. She isn’t great at interviews and often forgets questions and names. I think Natalie and Savanah look too much alike. But, if I were to make any changes at all, it would be Al Roker. Lately (about the last year or so) he has seemed like that kid in high school that wasn’t cool unless he puts someone else down. It is like he hangs out with Matt and tries for his funny lines to be the funny chubby guy. I know he has lost a lot of weight lately but i am kind of referring to the type of personality he would be playing if it were a movie.
    He is caustic. He makes comments that are so rude under his breath and I can’t believe that people don’t call him on it. It is like he greets the crowd and insults them right to their faces and they get this horrified look on their faces like “did he just say what I think he just said?” I have continued to watch because i like my local news and i know the timing so i don’t have to look at a clock as i get ready in the morning. But watch the next time and listen to Roker and his comments.

  19. Tom says:

    They can’t get rid of Ann Curry fast enough IMHO. I think she is the biggest single reason for the ratings decline. The show has been excruciating to watch ever since she got the co-host gig. But I think the Today format has also become too predictable and boring. Too much crazy trial coverage. Too much coverage of the royal family. Too many endless interviews with semi-stars pushing movies. Too many regurgitated news stories (seriously do you need to spend 10 minutes re-telling an old story just to give a 10-second update?) Too much self promotion. Too many news stories rebroadcast from the evening news the night before. It sure feels like NBC feels it has found a magic formula for Today show content. Hint, guys, it’s not a magic formula — it’s just boring. Try covering some actual news for a change — particularly in the first half hour.

  20. Jess says:

    okay, somebody explain to me how ratings work again… I thought they take the numbers from Nielsen families and then multiply it or model it somehow to extrapolate the “number of viewers” of a particulart show, is this right? In other words, there’s no way they can know the EXACT numbers of viewers, because not all our TVs are monitored, right?

    If this is correct, then isn’t there a probability interval on the estimates, aka “a point estimate plus/minus something?” So since the difference is so mall (13,000 viewers), can we actually say GMA beat Today? I feel like the confidence intervals of the two estimates should overlap… Not trying to argue one way or the other, just trying to figure out how they do the whole ratings thing…

  21. romi says:

    I watch whichever morning show has the most interesting guests that day. I do agree that Today has become too much like tabloid TV. I also like the new CBS morning show.

  22. nancy says:

    I watched Today since Matt was the “new” co-host. Over the past couple of years, I’ve been less interested. The stories are too sensationalized & tabloid like. They also run a topic into the ground. As for the host, Matt is no longer charming; he & Katie (and later Meridith) became smarmy & elitist. Ann seems lovely but she does trip up often & I feel sorry for her since so many people are ready to diss her. A lot of people commented that Ann is
    only good at reporting the news, which is how I feel about Natalie, Savannah, David Gregory, & everyone else except Lester. I think Lester is a great co-host with almost anyone. Now, I switch between Today, GMA, ABC & Fox unless Today’s Professionals are on the air.

  23. stucker0001 says:

    Everyone is missing an crucial point: Josh Elliot. I wonder how many of the viewers are women who love watching him each morning? Judging by the comments on the GMA fan page, a lot. I have watched GMA for years, and it would take a lot for me to ditch it. This current group is the best they have had in years. Watching all of them together (Robin, George, Josh, Sam, and Lara) makes you fell like you are hanging out with friends. Their chemistry is great, and I hope they continue gaining viewers…as well they should!

  24. bob says:

    I’m sure Ann Curry is a great person IRL, but I can’t stand her on the Today Show.

  25. Diane says:

    The show has turned more like a tabloid type of program, interviews with celebrities on news stories that have already been discussed the day before, repeating the same thing. Would love to see more human stories, making a difference, stories new that no one else has reported on. Take us to a place the viewers can experience thru the reporters eyes. Also, I love Ann Curry, but not as a co-host. You can tell it does not come natural for her compared to Meredith. She seems confused and is difficult for her to be a natural.

  26. Thomas Kaye says:

    I moved to Fox a year ago – tired of the liberal spin from Lauer and the gang – and please lose Donnie Deutsch ! Did he really say he does not think the serviceman who spoke up against President Obama is worthy to protect this country ??? He would be on his knees begging for protection if he were in danger.

  27. Chikee says:

    Loved Meredith. Like Matt. Love Al. And love Ann as a reporter, not a host.
    Mabye it’s time for new blood; I think Willie Geist and Tamron Hall could be amazing.

  28. Adam says:

    The TODAY show seemed to lose some of their hard hitting journalism after Katie left in 2005. I stuck with them when Meredith joined the show, and enjoyed it for the most part. While I do respect the loyalty NBC has shown to Ann, she has been one of the weakest links since she joined in 1997. Anything she does live (i.e. Hosting, the news desk, conducting an interview) is terrible. She leads her guests on, puts words in their mouths, asks some of the most painful questions, and always tries to get in the last word. She is capable of doing some good work, but those stories that are decent are taped and edited…never live. I’ve sadly switched to ABC after almost 16 years of watching TODAY, and don’t think I can go back unless there are some sugnificant changes. My first suggestion is to replace Ann with Hoda, Jenna, or possibly Savannah. Also, it might be time to update the set. It has a cold, uninviting feel. It should be warm and welcoming.

  29. Koni Allen says:

    Loved Katie but hated Meredith (Matt’s Luv) just too forced. I watched ABC until she lefted and now back to Today. I like Ann but do believe she is not comfortable yet and feel Matt makes it very obvious he doesn’t want her there.

  30. Judith says:

    Ann is such a bumbling idiot. She talks a thousand miler per hour and doesn’t even complete most words and sentences. The host of show like Today should be natural and likeable and competent. Ann is none of the above. She has to battle her way through every script and every interview – and please don’t make her have to improvise – her head spins and nearly explodes! Painful to watch.

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