It is Sunday, October 9, 1994. The Football airings on NBC and FOX have just ended, and it’s time for the networks to get into regular business. As usual, Sundays was the spot to get the TV movies out in the open (except for FOX, who didn’t want to change their successful sitcom programming), and it was always a battle abut who would be the number one movie on Sunday nights. Kind of like how movie studios wanted to have the number one movie of the week. At this particular day, CBS won the night – which means they won the 9:00pm TV movie battle with their offering IS THERE LIFE OUT THERE? Starring Reba McEntire and Keith Carradine, the story of a wife and family woman going back to college to get the degree she always dreamed about (not without creating a few soap-operish drama moments) was intriguing enough for the audience to make the movie a winner. Not really in the Nielsen weekly charts though, because SOMEONE SHE KNOWS won that week.
19.5 million viewers (12.9/20 in Households) tuned in, winning over FOX’s sitcom hour filled with MARRIED… WITH CHILDREN, winning over NBC’s TV movie repeat, winning over ABC’s Rosanna Arquette/Scott Bakula thriller. Proving that a lot of real-life elements in your movie might actually help you to get to the top of the time slot. Except of course you have an intriguing murder mystery.