2014 is a good year for Happy New Year, Charlie Brown. The 28-year-old cartoon drew a 1.5 rating among adults 18-49 and 5.4 million viewers in its annual airing on ABC from 8-9 PM last night.: Charles M. Schulz’s classic surged +36% in 18-49 and +32% in total viewers from last year when it aired on the same night but it fell closer to New Year’s Eve, on December 30. This marks a six-year highs for the Peanuts holiday special– since 2008 when ABC began airing it. That despite the fact that the animated program faced stronger competition from an original Mike & Molly (1.8) vs. lower rated all-repeat CBS comedies last year.
It was also a good night for the Melissa McCarthy CBS sitcom, which inched up a tenth from last Monday despite facing Charlie Brown and having a weaker lead-in from a 2 Broke Girls repeat (1.3) last night vs. a Big Bang Theory rerun (1.6) last week.
At 9 PM, Charlie Brown‘s ABC companion, Rudolph’s Shiny New Year (3.5 million, 1.0 in 18-49), also was up over its telecast on the same night last year, +6% in viewers and +11% in 18-49. ABC won the night in total viewers (6.8 million) while CBS edged it in 18-49 (1.2 vs. 1.1) on the strength of Mike & Molly, the only original last night and highest-rated program in 18-49.