TV Ratings Friday: 'Fringe,' 'Finder' Rise; 'Nikita,' 'Supernatural' At Lows; 'Grimm' Falls

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April 21st, 2012

Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 1.2/4 1.2/4 1.1/4 0.9/3 0.5/2
Total Viewers (million) 4.821 4.524 3.647 5.418 1.490

The Finder was up three tenths to a 1.2 adults 18-49 rating, vs. last week's series low 0.9 adults 18-49 rating. Fringe was up a tenth to a 1.0 adults 18-49 rating, versus last week's series low 0.9 rating.

Primetime: What Would You Do? was down a tenth vs. last week's 1.4  and was the only original episode on ABC

NBC's Grimm was down three tenths vs last week's 1.6 adults 18-49 rating. Dateline  was up four tenths to a 1.4 adults 18-49 rating compared with last week's 1.0 18-49 rating.

CBS was all repeats for the evening.

The CW's Friday night returned from repeats this week. Nikita was even with its series low 0.4 adults 18-49 rating three weeks ago, while Supernatural fell back tenth to a series low matching 0.6 adults 18-49 rating, compared with the 0.7 rating in its last original episode.

Late night ratings below the primetime table.

Overnight broadcast primetime ratings for Friday, April 20, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM ABC Shark Tank -R 1.2 4 5.049
FOX The Finder 1.2 4 4.206
CBS Mike & Molly -R 0.9 4 4.249
NBC Who Do You Think You Are? -R 0.8 3 4.194
CW Nikita 0.4 2 1.497
8:30PM CBS Rules of Engagement -R 0.8 3 3.554
9:00PM NBC Grimm 1.3 4 4.462
ABC Primetime What Would You Do? 1.3 4 4.383
FOX Fringe 1.0 3 3.089
CBS CSI: NY -R 0.8 3 6.169
CW Supernatural 0.6 2 1.484
10:00PM NBC Dateline NBC 1.4 4 5.808
ABC 20/20 -R 1.3 4 4.138
CBS Blue Bloods -R 0.8 3 6.182

via NBC press note:

In late-night metered-market households Friday night:

In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.4/6 with an encore telecast; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 1.9/5 with an encore; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 2.8/6; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.4/4 with an encore.

In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 0.7/3 with an encore; "Late Show," 0.4/2 with an encore; "Nightline," 0.8/4; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.5/2 with an encore.

At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.3/4 in metered-market household with an encore) beat CBS's first-run "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.1/3). In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.5/3 in 18-49 with an encore) topped "Late Late Show" (0.3/2).

At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 0.8/3 in metered-market households with an encore and a 0.3/2 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters.

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2012 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

NOTE: All ratings are "live plus same day" from Nielsen Media Research unless otherwise indicated.


Rating: Estimated percentage of the universe of TV households (or other specified group) tuned to a program in the average minute. Ratings are expressed as a percent.  More information on ratings is available here.

Share (of Audience): The percent of households (or persons) using television who are tuned to a specific program, station or network in a specific area at a specific time. (See also, Rating, which represents tuning or viewing as a percent of the entire population being measured.)

Fast Affiliate Ratings: These first national ratings, including demographics, are available at approximately 11 AM (ET) the day after telecast, and are released to subscribing customers daily. These data, from the National People Meter sample, are strictly time-period information, based on the normal broadcast network feed, and include all programming on the affiliated stations, sometimes including network programming, sometimes not. The figures may include stations that did not air the entire network feed, as well as local news breaks or cutaways for local coverage or other programming. Fast Affiliate ratings are not as useful for live programs and are likely to differ significantly from the final results, because the data reflect normal broadcast feed patterns. For example, with a World Series game, Fast Affiliate Ratings would include whatever aired from 8-11PM on affiliates in the Pacific Time Zone, following the live football game, but not game coverage that begins at 5PM PT. The same would be true of Presidential debates as well as live award shows and breaking news reports.

Time Shifted Viewing – Program ratings for national sources are produced in three streams of data – Live, Live+Same Day (Live+SD) and Live+7 Day. Time shifted figures account for incremental viewing that takes place with DVRs. Live+Same Day (Live+SD) include viewing during the same broadcast day as the original telecast, with a cut-off of 3:00AM local time when meters transmit daily viewing to Nielsen for processing. Live+7 Day ratings include incremental viewing that takes place during the 7 days following a telecast.

For more information see Numbers 101 and Numbers 102.

  • David

    I may be way off base here, but don’t you think that if Fringe was going to be cancelled, Fox would have done so already.
    I mean if I was one of the Exec’s and worried about the ratings I would have had no hesitation about letting the show runner’s know that after the last hitatus that the following episodes would be Fringes last, I would not have wanted to insult all those loyal fans by delaying the announcement any later than that.
    But yet here we are, only 3 episodes out from the finale (Season or Final) without a word.
    We know that the 2 part season finale will be on May 5th and 12th, and yet Fox has been reported as saying they will meet with the shows producers on May 5th for talks, Seem to be cutting it fine don’t you think to allow us the fans to digest the news that our show will no longer be on.
    However my positive side is saying that Fox is going discuss with the show runners the possibility of the show of the show winding up with a partial season 5 ( 13 to 15 episodes ) instead of the full season (22 episodes)
    Well at least that’s my theory, and since this is Fringe (Which i’m a big Fan) no theory is too insane

  • Geordiegirl1967

    @tvfreak and @buddaboy

    Welcome to SPN fandom. Its amazing that the show is still pulling in new viewers after 7 years. Tv freak you have some great times ahead of you. Ignore anything you are told about which eps, characters, seasons are good / bad and make up your own mind. There is no such thing as consensus among SPN as the comments here have demonstrated, and we are a passionate bunch. Personally I really liked Route 666 and am not as keen on Asylum. See – no consensus.

    I agree with all the posters pointing out the silliness of falling for EKs ‘5 year plan’ and seeing the transition from 5 to 6 as some big watershed after which everything went downhill. I see no fall in quality, but each season has elements that play differently depending on what you look for in the show. Keep watching and enjoy.

    Everyone seems to think it will be renewed for a final season,

    Not true. No one credible is suggesting that. There is zero evidence that s8 will be the last season. Marl P is on record as saying the show could go on for years to come, and there are no newer successful shows vying to knock it off its spot as 2nd highest rated show on CW. It is currently rating higher than all this year, and last years new shows. Unless every new show next year is a bit hit (highly unlikely), AND other veterans like 90210 and GG – which SPN currently beats in the ratings – overtake it (again a v remote possibility) then SPN will still be in the top half of CWs ratings next year. I think a s9 is pretty likely.

  • William

    ouch for grimm

  • Tessa

    I don’t hate Cas just the rabid fan base that wanted the show to die because they dared to get rid of him.

    You just confirmed what I said about most people hating Cas, it’s the fans they can’t stand and they transfer that hate to the character. It’s unfortunate that the small portion of Cas fans are so obnoxious that they cause these feelings in other viewers.

    This hate-by-proxy actually occurred to me pre 7×17 when the “Sam Loving Cas Hating Squad” went to every article about Cas’ return and posted fanwank, insults and attacks (see the parallels?) against Cas fans. I was just happy the show was getting so much attention and annoyed by the constant whining of the fans that his return would in some way be an affront to Sam’s storyline. The episode aired and it was mostly Sam centered, yet they still blamed the low ratings on Cas who was in ten minutes of the episode tops. I suddenly realized I was developing feelings of dislike towards Sam and had to check myself. Their hate wank against my favorite character, who had gotten nothing but mistreatment from the writers upon his return, was turning me against their favorite character even though he had nothing to do with it.

    Moral of the story: we got to watch these petty fandom wars because turning people off a main character (Sam) who is a constant presence on the show may cause the audience numbers to go down. I’m not saying it is as significant as DST, a move to Friday or the show’s general quality going down, but when a show’s entire audience consists of its core fans, pissing a faction of them off and causing proxy-hate toward a major character on the show is not productive to the ratings.

  • Freyja


    You just confirmed what I said about most people hating Cas, it’s the fans they can’t stand and they transfer that hate to the character. It’s unfortunate that the small portion of Cas fans are so obnoxious that they cause these feelings in other viewers.

    I can admit I disliked Castiel a lot and was not happy in his return, but I forgave him once he apologized for all his sins and took on Sam’s pain, just as I forgave Sam and Dean for theirs.

    Hell, even a part of me giggled when Castiel’s big return had low ratings, sure I knew deep down it was related to Hunger Games, but I still laughed, and even pointed blame. I did that just to piss off the rabid half of the fanbase. (because had it been in reverse we would have never heard the end of it) Yes, two wrongs don’t make a right, and I won’t do it again, it just felt good that one time LOL

    I’ve come across the rabid fanbase from all sides, and they have all been particularly nasty. I was told once a long long time ago, that if I wasn’t a Dean girl I wasn’t allowed to post in the Dean thread and to get out..(this happened on another board, during like season 2,3, or 4 can’t remember)

    Maybe I don’t understand why people get so rabid about a character, I can understand being passionate but to be so defensive and crazy about a character, and have so much hate for another one. Just makes no logical sense to me.

    Example– I play WOW and I play both sides Horde and Alliance, however; there are people that actually hate the Horde or Alliance and say you aren’t allowed to play both… I am like really why not? they don’t like me much either.

    We all love Supernatural just in our own ways and there is nothing wrong with that :)

  • Percysowner

    @Tessa No, actually I just don’t like Castiel Telling me that i could only dislike him if I am a prejudiced jerk who is only responding to his fans isn’t going to sway me. The extreme fans don’t help, but I dislike him all on his won, thank you very much. I stated why I don’t like him. I never said you shouldn’t like him. So being all condescending and telling me that I have no taste in characters, am unfair and stupid, really doesn’t do it. I don’t like Castiel period. You really don’t need to psychoanalyze me. I’m glad you like him. Oddly enough you are not the one and only judge of what to like on a TV show.

    Maybe I’m just a rebel. I didn’t like Dawson on Dawson’s Creek. I didn’t care for Fonzie on Happy Day and Grover is my favorite Muppet, not Kermit, I didn’t care about Firefly and HATED Dollhouse, so sue me. And I get to make those decisions, not you. And I don’t need your assumptions to try and degrade my opinions just because we disagree.

  • Lolly

    I think it’s foolish to argue the whole who likes or hates what SPN character because everyone has their point of view and that won’t change. I personally hated Lisa last season and I doubt there could’ve been anything the writers could have done to change the way I felt about her (other than make her evil maybe which I could’ve bought into).

    Cas haters are going to hate Cas regardless of how he’s written in the story, same with Bobby haters or Sam haters or Jo haters, etc. What makes me the most sad are the people who want the show to be 100% about Sam and Dean. While Sam and Dean are without a doubt the most important characters in the show, why shouldn’t they be able to form other relationships with secondary characters? Nobody had a problem that Buffy had relationships and friendships, or that Clark Kent had various friendships and romantic interests, why shouldn’t Sam and Dean be able to have those things too? In my opinion it makes for a richer show. Sam and Dean all the time with no secondary characters = boring.

    I apologize to all the non-SPN fans for this long non-tv ratings post btw. :)

  • LisaM

    Wow, lots of discussion here still, and all I wanted to know was if SPN got adjusted upwards. Nice thing about TV is there should be something for everyone. One person may hate or like scifi, another procedurals, and still another, reality shows. Luckily we have many channels to choose from. I try not to get on people for hating the shows I hate, because they don’t have to watch.

  • LisaM

    I meant to say for hating the shows I love. *needs edit button*

  • Tessa

    Maybe I don’t understand why people get so rabid about a character, I can understand being passionate but to be so defensive and crazy about a character, and have so much hate for another one. Just makes no logical sense to me.

    Same here. Not liking a character is one thing, organizing campaigns to hate on them, sending tweets and messages to producers to get him off the show and being nasty to others who don’t share your opinion is another thing. As a Dean&Cas fan I’m sorry you were treated to that. For what it’s worth I’ve had the exact same treatment on a Dean thread because I criticized his OOC writing and they told me to get off and stop disturbing their safe place.

    I’m not trying to convince anyone to like what I like. I’m not calling anyone a prejudiced jerk or a stupid person. I even gave an example of how I myself almost fell victim to irrational character hate so that means I don’t blame anyone if it happened to them. Crazy fans can do that to you. Or you could just not like a character but not create a cult around it. The point I was trying to make was fandom is all we got and if we spend our time fighting amongst each other instead of promoting our show, next season there might not be a show to fight over. Imagine if every Cas fan told a casual viewer not to watch the show because Cas was no longer in it. Or every Cas hater told them the show wasn’t worth it because Cas was back on it. That would be a load of negative word-of-mouth for a show that’s only got word-of-mouth for press. It also has the side effect of us losing the amazing momentum we got with polls and contests. We shouldn’t let Glee win anything over us, that is sacrilegious. They don’t need the online promotion, they’ve got the real thing. We’re the only people upholding this small, under-appreciated show and we can’t do that looking like crazy housewives fighting over who is a better fan or who got it wrong because we don’t share their taste.

  • Ryo

    There are only two things that contribute to an awesome show like Nikita getting low ratings:

    1. Being on The CW. The CW doesn’t give 100% focus to all of it’s shows. They don’t know how to properly promote their shows. It’s like the CW is there just to provide space for shows to air themselves. Nikita deserves an ALIAS type of audience. If ALIAS aired on the CW, it would get low ratings as well. Nikita would get much better ratings if it were on USA, ABC, CBS, or even ScFy.

    2. The concept of dragging out seasons all the way to May of the next year has always been dumb IMO. Taking so many hiatus’s, especially after the Winter hiatus. This is also a contributing factor to shows getting low ratings.

  • Freyja


    What about the fans who organized petitions
    sent tweets, wrote to the studio to get Sera fired, because she had Cas written out?
    And they blamed her for season 6 without all the facts?
    So see it happens all over the fandom no side is innocent, except maybe those not emotionally invested.

  • Freyja

    Damn I sent that too soon lol stupid cell phone.
    I had more though but I am off to bed.
    Goodnight everyone!

  • Tessa

    What about the fans who organized petitions
    sent tweets, wrote to the studio to get Sera fired, because she had Cas written out?

    That’s the other side of the ugly coin. I never said it was one sided.

    no side is innocent, except maybe those not emotionally invested.

    Or those not crazy. One could be emotionally invested and not go on mad crusades because of it. It’s only a TV show after all.

  • Patrick G.

    @ Freddy Arrow…actually, I DID read your last comment, since unlike Bill’s statement over the weekend, I believe that plenty of fans here not only post comments but actually read them. I actually find the comments far more enlightening and entertaining than the original content, which is woefully too short and only provides basic information, end of story. Some exploration about why shows get the ratings they get and what the networks that run them might be thinking about renewal vs. cancellation decisions would be welcome, as opposed to cut-and-dry reporting of the numbers. But, whatever. Your points about the commenting system are well-taken, so I stand corrected. But, no, Bill and Robert won’t make the changes you seek :(

  • Tom

    Does the WB even have enough shows in the pipeline to replace Ringer, HOD, and Nikita? I understand these are low rated shows, but what difference does it make if their replacements also flop? Currently, the writing for Nikita and Ringer is relatively solid. In contrast, HOD has a juvenile storyline that is entirely predictable. Personally, I’d like to see Ringer continue. The last few episodes were interesting and the season ended with a cliffhanger that could position the show for a second season. Nothing ever gets resolved in Nikita and that’s probably why the show gets low ratings. That’s too bad because – with the exception of Lynsey Fonseca – the acting is really good. HOD has Rachel Bilson and little else. I’d watch her read classified ads if it came to that, but I doubt if anyone else would agree. So, my unorthodox opinion is that the WB should keep Ringer and, if they can move the plot along, Nikita. HOD has to go.

  • Sly

    I don’t want Supernatural to go away!!

  • Dar

    Here’s an idea CW…..STOP showing reruns so much on shows like Nikita and Supernatural who are both on such bad day and times. Friday has always been a bad day for CW.

  • Jan


    I completely agree. I loved S1 of Nikita. But then S2 came along and sucked sooooo hard.
    What I disliked: Michael leaving Division he is in no way as tough, strong minded or badass as LFN Michael such a left down. He’s Nikita’s puppy.
    Alex revealing she was Alexandra Udivof and being revealed in Division as the mole. COME ONNNN! That storyline could have continued to mid S2
    Division not really being as scary but rather light hearted and easy going

    So basically from episode 17 of Nikita s1. I started disliking it.

    Worst of all WHERE THE HECK IS DEVO SAWA! Him, Dillon Casey and Aaron Stanford are the best men of the show!

    Only good things of Season 2: Madeline Pierce, Sean Pierce and sometimes Alex.

  • charlotte

    If nikita is cut of cw I’m cut of cw. Tried of these stupid shows get ratings best shows gettin the foot. keep nikita or everyone who watches it should band together not watch anything on cw at night…………………..stop with all the damn breaks doing rep-eats. this year was crazy with all the breaks,repeats…………..wake up- cw get with the real program………………

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