Michaele Salahi's 'Real Housewives' real popular with viewers
More than 1.6 million people checked out the unveiling of "Real Housewives of DC" Thursday night at 9.
That's slightly shy of last year's "Real Housewives of New Jersey" premiere which copped 1.7 million.
On the other hand, "New Jersey" premiered in May (of '09) while "DC" is opening in August, when the number of Homes Using Television -- the so-called HUT level -- is down.
On yet another hand, none of the "Real Housewives" iterations has enjoyed the kind of pre-premiere publicity as did the "DC" version, thanks to the antics of cast member Michaele Salahi and her husband, Tareq who have managed to turn the ensemble reality series's other housewives into unwilling supporting cast members, including include Catherine Ommanney, the British divorcee who was married to a Newsweek photographer at the time of shooting; Mary Amons, the self-described super-mom who lives in a McMansion in McLean; real estate agent Stacie Scott Turner; and modeling agency owner Lynda Erkiletian.
In the most recent Salahi stunt, their lawyer is saying they are considering their legal options in re Whoopi Goldberg and "The View." The Salahis are unhappy that the show called them "White House gate crashers" when Michaele and the other housewives were on the ABC daytime talk show and are also mad that Goldberg touched Michaele Salahi during the show and yelled a four-letter word at then backstage.
"Real Housewives of DC" came in laps ahead in the ratings of all of the franchise's other iterations.
That includes "Atlanta" which opened to an audience of 656,000 in Octover of '08, "NYC" which logged 824,000 in March of '08, and the very first episode that started it all, of "Real Housewives of Orange County" which attracted 430,000 viewers back in March of 2006.
Oh, and you know all those people in Washington who said there was no way they were going to watch this drivel? More people in the Washington market watched "Real Housewives of DC" Thursday night at 9 than watched any other TV program -- cable or broadcast. About 5 percent of the town was glued to the show.
Washington was the show's highest rated market. But it also clocked strong numbers in surrounding markets like Baltimore, Philly, and Norfolk. It also performed well in other towns where "Real Housewives" franchises are located including New York and Atlanta.
Lisa de Moraes
August 6, 2010; 8:21 PM ET
Categories: Local TV
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