The holidays are in full swing once more, and with them, the holiday television specials. The annual CBS airing of the animated television special Frosty the Snowman brought in top viewership numbers for the network this weekend, beating out shows line American Housewife and Dateline.
The annual airing of the Rankin-Bass cartoon on CBS has become a holiday tradition for the network, and this year marked Frosty the Snowman’s 50th annual screening. The story of Frosty the Snowman is based on the Walter E. Rollins and Steve Nelson Christmas song of the same name. In case you’re somehow unfamiliar with the tale, Frosty the Snowman follows a magical snowman named Frosty who comes to life as he tries to make his way to the North Pole before he melts, aided by a little girl named Karen. The cartoon directed by Jules Bass and Arthur Rankin Jr. features the voices of Jimmy Durante as the Narrator, June Foray as Karen, and Jackie Vernon as Frosty.
Airing on CBS in the 8pm slot, Frosty the Snowman drew in a 0.7 ratings share among the 18-49 age range, and drew in a total audience of 4.04 million viewers. CBS followed it up with an airing of the 1992 sequel to the cartoon titled Frosty Returns, drawing in about 3.45 million viewers. These numbers can be compared to the other popular shows on competing broadcast networks in the same time slot that night. Fox’s WWE Friday Night SmackDown, even with its 0.7 ratings share, brought in only 2.34 million viewers, and shows on ABC and NBC were only bringing in about a 0.5 or 0.6 ratings share. Even the CW, which tried to participate in the holiday spirit with an airing of Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer, only brought in a 0.2 audience share. As December finally begins, it appears more holiday specials like Frosty the Snowman will be taking center stage on broadcast TV.