CBS wins weekly ratings crown with ‘I Love Lucy’

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Lucille Ball, center, dressed as Santa Claus in a colorized "I Love Lucy Christmas Special." (AP Photo/CBS)

Lucille Ball, center, dressed as Santa Claus in a colorized “I Love Lucy Christmas Special.” (AP Photo/CBS)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Nearly six decades after it first aired, an “I Love Lucy” Christmas special was last week’s most-watched holiday program.

There was a gimmick involved: The episode of the 1950s Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz sitcom was colorized. A companion episode that featured Lucy as a grape-stomper in Italy also went from black-and-white to color.

The Nielsen company said Tuesday that the “I Love Lucy” special on CBS drew 8.7 million viewers to rank as last Friday night’s most-watched program. Runner-up “A Charlie Brown Christmas” — a relative newcomer that debuted in 1965 — settled for 6.4 million the night before on ABC.

CBS was the most-watched network. But NBC was the most popular among advertiser-favored young adults with help from “The Voice” finale and the NFL Bears-Eagles game on “Sunday Night Football.”

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