TV Ratings Friday: 'Fringe' and 'Finder' Finales Rise, as 'Grimm', 'Shark Tank' and entire CBS Lineup Fall

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May 12th, 2012


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 1.5/5 1.2/4 1.1/4 1.1/4 0.5/2
Total Viewers (million) 4.994 8.447 4.619 3.660 1.528


ABC was the top  network among adults 18-49, while CBS was the number one network in total viewers. 

On ABC, Shark Tank earned a 1.6 among adults 18-49, down two tenths from last week's 1.8. Primetime: What Would You Do? also earned a 1.6, which was up from last week's 1.4 adults 18-49 rating.

On CBS, Undercover Boss earned 1.1, down four tenths from last week's 1.5. CSI: NY scored a 1.1, down three tenths from last week's 1.4. Blue Bloods drew a 1.3 18-49 rating, down a tenth from last week's 1.4 rating.

On NBC, Who Do You Think You Are? scored a 0.8, down a tenth from last week's 0.9 in adults 18-49. Grimm earned a 1.2 adults 18-49 rating, down two-tenths from last week's 1.4. Dateline matched last week's 1.3 rating.

On FOX,  The Finder's series finale earned a 1.1, up a tick from last week's 1.0 rating. Fringe's season finale was also up a tick, earning a 1.0 compared to last week's 0.9 rating.

On the CW, Nikita was even with last week's 0.4 rating. Supernatural also matched last week's 0.7 rating.

Late night ratings below the primetime table.

Overnight broadcast primetime ratings for Friday, May 11, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM ABC Shark Tank 1.6 6 5.545
CBS Undercover Boss 1.1 4 5.753
FOX The Finder 1.1 4 4.156
NBC Who Do You Think You Are? 0.8 3 4.760
CW Nikita 0.4 2 1.376
9:00PM ABC Primetime: What Would You Do? 1.6 5 4.794
NBC Grimm 1.2 4 4.457
CBS CSI: NY 1.1 4 9.028
FOX Fringe 1.0 3 3.164
CW Supernatural 0.7 2 1.680
10:00PM ABC 20/20 1.4 5 4.642
CBS Blue Bloods 1.3 4 10.560
NBC Dateline NBC 1.2 4 4.639

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," 2.5/6; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 2.4/6; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.0/7; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.5/4. 

  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 0.7/3; "Late Show," 0.5/2; "Nightline," 1.1/4; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.6/3.

  • At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.5/5 in metered-market households) beat CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.2/4).  In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.7/4 in 18-49) topped "Late Late Show" (0.3/2).

  • At 1:35 a.m., "Last Call with Carson Daly" averaged a 0.9/4 in metered-market households and a 0.4/3 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.

  • Jamie

    Those are some AWFUL numbers for CBS.

  • Stella

    Is the CSI:NY rating a joke?

    It ended w/o a cliffhanger though, so that’s good for it’s fans.

  • jr

    Will Jesse Stone have a sub 1 rating on May 20th?

  • shawn

    I think playoff Basketball has some of these shows down a little bit. Blue Bloods is FINE. It is a Friday night show. A 1.3 is not great, but for Friday night it is not horrible and over 10 million viewers helps!

  • DougF


    I don’t think it will effect it. I know SPN has been preempted before this season in some places (I also think one time it was Chicago) and SPN has consistently gotten a 0.7 except for that one 0.6 this season.

  • Sports Preemption

    @ Doug

    There’s no way they move SPN. It’s been too solid and regular where it’s located. Fringe, SPN, and Grimm are all kind of stuck where they are because they’ve performed decently well and all three networks don’t want to go through the crapshoot of trying to fit something else into that timeslot that works. What you should be asking for is possibly a show that leads into SPN better, and ANTM doesn’t seem like it is it, but we’ll wait and see. That’s basically how I feel about NBC and Grimm next season.

    Poor Grimm. Haven’t seen it or Awake yet, but I must say, Shark Tank has been impressing me recently. ABC must be really happy with that show with how well it performs compared to how cheap it must be to produce, and on a Friday too.

  • Baqinardo

    Look again. hint: GRIMM

  • Lisa

    Wonder if Nikita can manage even a .5 with its finale. I hope it does move to a different night next season, because that would show that it can do better or show that it can’t. As it is, right now a lot of people are claiming that it would take off in a different slot, and a lot think it would keep doing poorly. No way to know unless it gets a chance.

    I like the idea of Top Model going to Friday. It’s been faltering so badly, so why not give its Wednesday slot to another show?

  • Victor


    Everything went down in its 2nd half.. except for Fringe which rose

    Not quite true. Grimm also rose in its 2nd half ;)

  • robin

    nikita .4 last episode
    TSC .6 last episode

    nikita renewed TSC cancelled.

  • Gabe

    I rememeber last year when the season finale of fringe got a series low (1.2) and I was very disappointed. Now this… Oh well, at least it’s renewed.

  • Greg

    1.1 for Undercover Boss and CSI? Ouch.

  • Mon

    Bye CSI: NY. :( Last night was great. The past eight years was remarkable! I’ll miss you!

  • Tessa


    I doubt that would be the case. They likely won’t touch their Friday lineup, besides pairing up ANTM with SPN won’t do either of those shows any good because there is zero overlap. That would also be a death sentence for Tyra’s show as hardly anyone watches reality on Friday. At least Nikita is at home with the Friday action/genre lineups.

    I was pretty impartial about Nikita’s renewal but looking at its numbers I can’t say I didn’t wish they had a higher rated show leading Supernatural.

  • DougF


    Besides I think they are showing it on Sunday at 8. Not sure, but maybe Nielsen will add the Chicago rating into the finals, when they come out Monday.

  • Dahne

    Sorry to hear about the preemption in Chicago but have faith Supernatural will stay as steady as usual. Sorry that Nikita never seems to rise. I like Nikita and have enjoyed this season but renewing it is not a good sign for the CW or for SPN. I know that SPN is basically self-sufficient and there is no way the CW will put any kind of a hit before it, but it would have been interesting to see what would happen to SPN’s ratings if another show lead out.

  • Marcos

    I was hoping with the renewal Nikita woul rise =\

  • rob60990

    Awful for CBS and Undercover Boss. CSI NY is dead now.

    Shark Tank did ok. Nice jump for What would you do.

  • Speedroc

    nikita .4 last episode
    TSC .6 last episode

    nikita renewed TSC cancelled.

    Nikita = better show.

  • Ram510

    Maybe the CW also likes the fact that Nikita brings in older viewers since they are trying to “grow up” these days

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