Three episodes of the "Simpsons" — set in the fictitious town of Springfield, U.S.A. — combined with the "Married with Children" reunion special helped FOX tie CBS in the Sunday night ratings race. Both networks won two hours that evening.
According to zap2it.com, CBS won the 7-8 PM time slot with its long-running news program "60 Minutes." That network also scored with the second hour of the movie "Open House" from 10-11 PM. FOX won the 8-9 PM period with "The Simpsons" and the 9-10 PM slot with its special about the dysfunctional Bundy family.
The ABC/"Wonderful World of Disney" production of Meredith Willson's "The Music Man" — starring Tony winners Matthew Broderick and Kristin Chenoweth — was viewed by 13.1 million musical lovers, Variety reports. The stage-to-screen adaptation of the classic Tony-winning musical set in River City, Iowa, netted a 3.8 rating/9 share in adults 18-49. Compared to its other Sunday movies, "Music Man" scored higher-than-average numbers for the ABC network, though the gains were not extraordinary.
"The Music Man" fared best during its first two hours, finishing second to "60 Minutes" — with a 7.2 rating/11 share — from 7-8 PM and second to FOX's "The Simpsons" — from 8-9 PM — with a 7.9 rating/12 share. The movie musical about con man Harold Hill fell to fourth place for its final hour, though numbers remained steady.
Meredith Willson's The Music Man opened on Broadway in 1957 starring Robert Preston and Barbara Cook. Both actors won Tony Awards for their work (the show also nabbed the Tony for Best Musical, beating West Side Story; New Girl in Town; Oh, Captain!; and Jamaica), and Preston repeated his role in the 1962 film opposite Shirley Jones. The classic score includes such tunes as "My White Knight," "Goodnight My Someone," "Lida Rose," "Till There Was You," "Seventy-Six Trombones," "Gary, Indiana," "Marian the Librarian," "The Wells Fargo Wagon," "Trouble" and "The Sadder But Wiser Girl." The soundtrack to the new Disney version is now available in stores.