By Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist Published Jan 24, 2011 at 11:00 AM

The key number coming out of Sunday's Packers win over the Bears, at least in TV terms, is that only a 15 percent share of the TVs on during the game were tuned to something else.

The preliminary overnight numbers from Nielsen Media Research give a measure of just how big a deal the game was in the Milwaukee TV market. Remember, the ratings don't take into account the crowds at parties or at bars.

So, that preliminary ratings is a 57.0, 57 percent of all TV households in southeast Wisconsin. That translates to more than 513,000 area homes tuned to Fox's game coverage on Channel 6.

Those ratings are measured every quarter-hour, and based on those preliminary numbers, interest peaked from 5 to 5:15 p.m., when the ratings was 59.4.

It's not surprising that ratings were high throughout the game, and that they peaked at the end.

The increased interest gave Channel 6's 10 p.m. newscast a win for the night as well.

Chuck Steinmetz, general manager of the Fox affiliate, says the station's plans were in place for a Packers' win. Once that happened, the plan went into effect.

Tom Pipines is heading of to Pittsburgh for a week of reporting, but the focus this week is Green Bay.

"Not a lot happens in Dallas 'til next week," Steinmetz told me this morning. Channel 6's team will include on-air folks from both their sports and news staffs.

His assessment of the next two weeks: "It's gonna be a fun ride."

On TV: So what's Oprah Winfrey's big family secret? She says on her show -- which already aired live in Chicago -- that she has a half-sister she didn't know about living in Milwaukee. Oprah talks about her O-normous news, and introduces her sister, on her show  at 4 p.m. on Channel 12.

  • If you believe TMZ, Regis Philbin is leaving "Live! with Regis and Kelly" this summer because his $18- to $20-million annual salary was being cut.
  • DirecTV is the latest to reject the History Channel's rejected "The Kennedys." It's scheduled to air in Canada, so you may have to travel to watch the miniseries.
  • Deadline Hollywood reports TNT is looking for ways to keep "The Closer" alive a bit longer, including extending the final season or spinning off another series.
  • Here's an idea that sounds like a flop in the making. NBC has ordered a pilot of David E. Kelley's idea for a new version of "Wonder Woman." Remember that new version of "Bionic Woman" a couple seasons back?
  • The self-appointed TV watchdog Parents Television Council is targeting advertisers for MTV's raunchy teen drama "Skins." It's reporting that H&R Block, Wrigley, General Motors, and Taco Bell have pulled their ads from the show.

Don't look for Keith: In case you missed the shocker on Friday night, Keith Olbermann is gone from MSNBC, although it's not clear if he was pushed or he dumped, or if it was a little bit of both.

MSNBC has moved quickly to change the weeknight schedule."The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell" moves up two hours to Olbermann's old 7 p.m. shot, "The Ed Show" with Ed Schultz moves to O'Donnell's old 9 p.m. slot. "The Rachel Maddow Show" remains at 8 p.m.

While the Olbermann announcement was unexpected on Friday, it's not a surprise that the relationship ended between him and MSNBC. When he was suspended last year for violating the network's rules for political donations, he came back less than contrite.

His liberal politics aside, at his best, Olbermann was a rare TV advocate for the sound of the written word. He crafted his scripts with great care at a time when most pundits go the populist route and sound more conversational than erudite.

I'm sure that once his contractual controls end, he'll be back on the air, somewhere.

In the meantime, here's the video of his final segment on "Countdown."

Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist

Tim Cuprisin is the media columnist for He's been a journalist for 30 years, starting in 1979 as a police reporter at the old City News Bureau of Chicago, a legendary wire service that's the reputed source of the journalistic maxim "if your mother says she loves you, check it out." He spent a couple years in the mean streets of his native Chicago, and then moved on to the Green Bay Press-Gazette and USA Today, before coming to the Milwaukee Journal in 1986.

A general assignment reporter, Cuprisin traveled Eastern Europe on several projects, starting with a look at Poland after five years of martial law, and a tour of six countries in the region after the Berlin Wall opened and Communism fell. He spent six weeks traversing the lands of the former Yugoslavia in 1994, linking Milwaukee Serbs, Croats and Bosnians with their war-torn homeland.

In the fall of 1994, a lifetime of serious television viewing earned him a daily column in the Milwaukee Journal (and, later the Journal Sentinel) focusing on TV and radio. For 15 years, he has chronicled the changes rocking broadcasting, both nationally and in Milwaukee, an effort he continues at

When he's not watching TV, Cuprisin enjoys tending to his vegetable garden in the backyard of his home in Whitefish Bay, cooking and traveling.