via press release:
'SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE' DELIVERS ITS BIGGEST QUARTERLY AUDIENCE IN EIGHT YEARS
IT'S THE TOP QUARTER FOR 'SNL' IN TOTAL VIEWERS SINCE THE FOURTH QUARTER OF 2000; IN 18-49, 'SNL' ACHIEVES ITS HIGHEST FOURTH-QUARTER RATING IN SIX YEARS
'SNL' IS UP 59 PERCENT IN 18-49 VS. ORIGINALS FOR THE YEAR-AGO QUARTER
UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. – January 5, 2009 – "Saturday Night Live" has generated its highest fourth-quarter rating in adults 18-49 in six years and its biggest overall audience for any quarter in eight years, according to "most current" in-home viewing figures from Nielsen Media Research.
For the fourth quarter, "Saturday Night Live" (3.7 rating, 14 share in adults 18-49, 8.9 million viewers overall) has scored its highest 18-49 average for a fourth quarter since 2002 and its highest 18-49 rating for any quarter since the first quarter of 2004. The overall viewer total of 8.9 million is "SNL's" highest for any quarter since the fourth quarter of 2000.
Versus the year-ago quarter, "Saturday Night Live" originals were up 59 percent in 18-49 rating (4.3 vs. 2.7, "live plus seven," originals only) and 67 percent in total viewers (10.4 million vs. 6.2 million).
Undefeated "SNL" has now won its time period for 60 straight quarters in adults 18-49.
The quarter included a number of stellar performances by "Saturday Night Live," which debuted weeks earlier than in previous years, an unprecedented scheduling move designed to take advantage of intense interest in the 2008 election campaign. Highlights of the quarter included the October 18 telecast hosted by Josh Brolin with musical guest Adele and featuring an appearance by Vice Presidential candidate Governor Sarah Palin (6.4 rating in 18-49, 16.8 million viewers overall in updated "live plus seven" results), which attracted "SNL's" highest 18-49 rating since September 24, 1994 and biggest overall audience since March 12, 1994.
"Most current" Nielsens for the fourth quarter are "live plus seven day" figures except for the two most recent weeks, which are "live plus same day."