Robin Williams Death Coverage Pushes CNN to First Demo Win Over ‘O’Reilly’ Since Malaysia Crash

Coverage of Williams’ death boosts “AC 360” past Fox News in 8 o’clock hour — the first time since mid-March

Robin Williams

The tragic news of Robin Williams‘ suicide on Monday dominated social media, water cooler conversation, and of course, cable news.

As tends to happen, CNN reaped the benefits of the developing story, which broke around 6:55 ET. The below numbers come from Nielsen and measure the 8 p.m. hour.

Also read: Robin Williams’ Final Photo, Social Media Moments

CNN got a big boost from the sad news, as Wolf Blitzer — filling in for Anderson Cooper — earned 735,000 viewers in the key 25-54 demographic. By comparison, Fox News’ “O’Reilly Factor” received 688,000, while MSNBC’s “All In With Chris Hayes” got 169,000.

HLN’s “Nancy Grace” had 166,000.

The last time that CNN bested FNC in the demo at 8 p.m. was on March 14, during continuing coverage of 2014’s initial Malaysia Airlines disaster.

Also read: Robin Williams Found in Bedroom ‘With a Belt Secured Around His Neck,’ Coroner Says

In total viewers, however, Bill O’Reilly topped with 3.3 million, while “AC 360” had 1.9 million — the more typical ranking.

In third place overall, Hayes got 663,000 total viewers, with Grace reeling in 539,000.

Also read: Robin Williams Appreciation — Master of Laughter, Master of Tears

On March 14, “AC360” had 410,000 viewers in the demo, while O’Reilly had 397,000.

CNN had also topped Fox News the prior two days, March 12 and March 13.