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CNN's Big Bet on Charles Barkley and Gayle King Has Been a Flop, and It's Only Getting Worse

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CNN rolled the dice when it paired up former NBA star and basketball commentator Charles Barkley with CBS morning show host Gayle King for a weekly show.

Separately, Barkley and King are each popular with their audiences, with King anchoring “CBS Mornings” and Barkley sitting on the panel on TNT’s “Inside the NBA.”

CNN’s stock with viewers has apparently tanked so dramatically in recent years that the tandem is a primetime afterthought.

The New York Post reported ratings for the latest Wednesday evening broadcast of “King Charles” lost in the ratings to reruns of “South Park” and “Seinfeld.”

The show debuted on Nov. 29 and airs every Wednesday at 10 p.m. ET.

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“King Charles” opened with 500,000 total viewers in Don Lemon’s old time slot with 139,000 of those viewers being among the 25-54 age demographic that is sought after by advertisers, according to the Post.

Those numbers weren’t particularly strong but were at least respectable.

But in the weeks since the show’s premiere, people are tuning out the show.

Citing information from Nielsen, the Post reported that the Jan. 31 broadcast only attracted 400,000 total viewers. To make matters worse, the show tanked in the age demographic, attracting only 89,000 — the first time “King Charles” fell short of 100,000 viewers in this demo.

Do you regularly watch cable news?

Reruns of “South Park,” “Seinfeld,” “Everybody Loves Raymond” and “Modern Family” each beat “King Charles” in total viewers on Jan. 31, which is not even the most embarrassing part of the show’s unraveling.

The “South Park” episode in question — the one that defeated CNN’s exercise in gaiety — aired at 2:30 a.m., according to the Post.

People have simply had enough of CNN and its mission to spread lies, twist truths and demonize millions of conservative Americans.

Naturally, a source described as being “close” to CNN, disputed the Nielsen numbers and the notion its failing show is indeed failing when pressed for comment by the Post.

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CNN’s source said that the show’s ratings are not an accurate picture of how many people watch “King Charles” and pointed out that the show is available to stream on-demand on MAX.

As if hordes of people who pay for the Warner Bros. Discovery-owned streaming service are going to log in, ignore HBO’s vast library of great shows and choose anything from CNN.

The CNN sources also argued the show is embracing diversity and attracts more minority viewership than its competitors.

“King Charles” came in a distant last place in the cable news ratings, and the apparent takeaway for those propping up the failed network is that at the very least, diversity notched a win.

Fox News’ “Gutfeld!” smashed all the competition Jan. 31 with 2.2 million total viewers and 241,000 in the demo.


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Johnathan Jones has worked as a reporter, an editor, and producer in radio, television and digital media.
Johnathan "Kipp" Jones has worked as an editor and producer in radio and television. He is a proud husband and father.




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