1953-54 Soap Ratings


CBS aired eight daytime soaps in the 1953-54 season, led once again by Search for Tomorrow (15.8, -2%), Guiding Light (14.4, +27%), and Love of Life (14.0, =). Guiding Light notably moved back to the noon hour, leading to the surge in ratings and movement from 4th place overall to 2nd place. Its 91% retention was far better than the 65% retention and 9.2 rating it received in the same time slot out of the same lead-in just two years prior. 

NBC interrupted CBS’s dominance with Hawkins Falls, down a bit to an 11.7 and moving down a spot to fourth place. Airing directly out of Hawkins Falls was new soap The Bennetts, which was low-rated and short-lived. 

CBS went four for five with their new soaps, canceling only Women with a Past. With a 7.5 rating, the 4 pm soap was weaker than its lead-out, The Secret Storm. Valiant Lady was the top-rated new soap, notching a 10.2 household average at noon, but still left the veterans that followed it to do the heavy lifting in the hour. CBS’s 1 pm half-hour, consisting of The Brighter Day at 1 pm and Portia Faces Life at 1:15, were both on the weaker side. Both were renewed, though Portia ultimately did not last long thereafter.

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