Elvis’ Appearance on the Steve Allen Show – July 1st, 1956

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On July 3rd, the Times reported the actual ratings. N.B.C.-TV’s Steve Allen toppled C.B.S.-TV’s Ed Sullivan in the hotly contested 8 to 9 P. M. time period last Sunday. Mr. Allen, who featured Elvis Presley, singer, scored a Trendex rating of 20.2 as against Mr. Sullivan’s 14.8. The former attracted 55.3 per cent of the viewing audience and the latter drew 39.7 per cent. It was N.B.C.’s best showing since May 30, 1954. During the 1955-1956 season, N.B.C. surpassed Mr. Sullivan only three times. The show managed to beat out Sullivan’s in spite of the number of high profile guests that appeared that night which included John Huston, Jose Ferrer, Orson Welles, Lauren Bacall, Edward G. Robinson, Vincent Price, Burl Ives and even Gregory Peck reenacting scenes from his upcoming film ‘Moby Dick’. Later on the same night Elvis stopped by Hy Gardner’s live TV interview show, looking a lot like one of the performers he most admired, the late James Dean.

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