Last night'spremiered to 29.8 million average viewers and an 11.7 adults 18-49 according to preliminary Nielsen numbers.
That's pretty much identical, though down just afrom last year's preliminary numbers for 's season premiere on January 13, 2009 which averaged 30.1 million and an 11.8 rating with adults 18-49.
This halts a string of consecutive annual double digit percentage losses from Idol's peak in 2007. It could be curiosity over what the show would be like without Paul and with Ellen, knowledge that it's Simon's last season, both or neither...
remained strong with nearly 21 million viewers opposite .
Check back in a bit for the full overnight report.