Fox Broadcasting's "Totally Hidden Video" gave the fledgling network its highest-rated premiere, following allegations it was a "Candid Camera" ripoff that used actors instead of unsuspecting victims.

NBC easily extended its winning streak to 55 consecutive weeks."Totally Hidden Video" tied with NBC's "Seinfeld Chronicles," starring stand-up comic Jerry Seinfeld, for 21st place in the Nielsen ratings for the week ended July 9. "Seinfeld Chronicles" was broadcast on Wednesday.

Fox had to substitute a part of "Totally Hidden Video" on Sunday after it was learned that actors were used in two segments. The show is billed as using a hidden camera to record the reactions of unsuspecting people.

Allen Funt, creator of "Candid Camera," has sued Quantum Media Inc. on grounds the show uses many of the same stunts from his 43 years of "Candid Camera."

The Fox Sunday schedule also got a boost when "Married . . . With Children," normally Fox's highest-rated show, got its highest rating in a tie for 29th place.

"Totally Hidden Video" got a 10.5 rating and "Married . . . With Children" got 10.0. In past weeks, "Married . . . With Children" has been in the mid 40s in the rankings and had ratings of 8.6 or lower.

NBC's "Cheers" took undisputed possession of first place in the ratings. ABC's "Roseanne," tied with "Cheers" for first last week, fell to 13th place thanks to Fourth of July fireworks.

All of the network Tuesday night shows suffered because of the holiday last week. The average ratings for all three networks fell to 50 percent, from 63 percent the week before. ABC won the night with a ratings average of only 8.9. "Roseanne," with 12.2, was the only show to get into double-digit ratings.

NBC won the A.C. Nielsen Co. ratings with an average of 10.1. ABC was second with 8.8 and CBS third with 8.4.

For the season to date from Sept. 19, NBC leads with 15.1, ABC is second with 12.1 and CBS third with 12.0.

The ratings is the percentage of the estimated 90.4 million homes in the United States that have televisions. The share is a percentage of sets in use.

CBS had the highest-rated evening news show with a rating of 8.5. ABC, which tied for first with CBS last week, was second with 8.1 and NBC was third with 7.9.


The top 10 programs for the week were: 1. Cheers (NBC); 2. Dear John (NBC); 3. The Cosby Show (NBC); 4. Different World (NBC); 5. Murder, She Wrote (CBS); 6. 60 Minutes (CBS); 7. L.A. Law (NBC); 8. 20/20 (ABC); 9. Golden Girls (NBC); and 10. Unsolved Mysteries (NBC) and Night Court (NBC).

The second 10 consisted of: 12. Full House (ABC); 13. Roseanne (ABC); 14. Mr. Belvedere (ABC); 15. Jake and The Fatman (CBS); 16. Knight and Daye (NBC); 17. Sunday Night Movie: The Man With the Golden Gun (ABC); 18. Sunday Night Movie: Of Pure Blood (CBS); 19. Monday Night Movie: Moving Target (NBC) and Growing Pains (ABC).

The week's big losers were: 70. Tour of Duty (CBS); 71. Have Faith (ABC); 72. COPS (FOX); 73. Garry Shandling Show (FOX) and Tracey Ullman Show (FOX); 75. Jim Henson (NBC); 76. CBS Summer Playhouse; 77. The Reporters (FOX); 78. Duet (FOX); and 79. Beyond Tomorrow (FOX).