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.

  • pandorajinel(formerly Erin)

    High Fructose corn syrup is a real product. It exists right now. It is in most foods (everything Sam said and a couple of things besides). Preliminary science suggests that it’s over consumption (easily done since its in so many products) increases rates of obesity (and there for Type 2 diabetes, heart failure, atherosclerosis, hypertension, stroke, and cancer) and the government isn’t doing a darn thing about. In fact, one of the reasons its used so much is because corn is heavily subsidized by the government. In other words the government pays farmers to grow corn.

    And remember, all it looks like is spikes in the obesity rate (something that is also happening right now in this country). Depression, lethargy, poor memory and all of that go along with obesity. Everything would look normal, nothing would cause the kind of alarm that a bacterial or viral epidemic would.

  • Joseph

    I only wish Univision’s overall number of viewerss and the 18-34 demo numbers for the broadcast networks had been included last night (May 11th).

    I suspect Univision won the 18-34 demo last night, and came close to winning the 18-49 demo as well, if not actually winning it.

  • Johnny

    Everyone who says “these are awful ratings”… consider this:

    The reality is that these are as good as the ratings are going to get on a Friday night. There’s no way they’ll get better. Less people watch TV on Friday nights, not to mention that less people are watching TV across the board.

    This is obviously why Nikita was renewed, for example. Being TWO seasons away from syndication, the CW must be pretty confident that anything else they’d put there won’t get better ratings.

  • E. Rector


    I think the whole CSI needs to go, these season finale numbers SUCK for a CBS show finale!

    * CSI: NY is just boring and repetitve anyway. It’d be better if they “beefed up” the writing and Gary Sinise would use the spark he had in the show’s earlier seasons.

    * CSI: Miami is just HORRIBLE, the writers from CSI: MIA must do crack, cocaine or something! This show has jumped over the shark and the whole damn Pacific Ocean! It’s truly the WORST of the CSI franchise

    * CSI:, why the hell would they choose Ted Danson & Elizabeth Shue as a set of partners?! I found myself GAGGING through the 12th season finale, the episodes was even too predictable although it had twists. Either Ted or Liz needs to go for Marg Helenburg or either “Grissom” aka Will Petersen. And FIRE the current writers… for ALL THREE series

    I used to LOVE the CSI brand, now I wish they were all canceled. I know I won’t miss CSI: Miami, or even NY for that matter.

  • Mickey


    Spoilers for seasons 6 and 7

    They had already established that pagan magic can trump judeo-christian creatures. In Clap Your Hands If You Believe, the leprachaun offered to get Sam’s soul out of the cage, explaining that his magic allows him to do things angels cannot, even against Lucifer himself.


    It’s locked in a box with the devil.


    Your devil. Not mine.


    There’s no freaking way a leprechaun can do what angels cannot.


    Angels. *laughs* Please. I’m talking about real magic, sonny. From my side of the fence.

    They have already also established that God locked the leviathan away in purgatory because they were too powerful and destructive and would destroy all his other creations.

    So it makes sense in the world they have constructed that leviathan can beat angels, but witches can use their pagan magic to cast a spell on leviathan. (Couldn’t kill them, mind, could only incapacitate them for a little while.)

    They build the world, they make the rules, and there was nothing about that that contradicted rules they had already made.

  • tia

    i loved last nights spn. it actually felt like a season 2 episode. especially with the intereations between sam and dean. season 8 is the last season on jensen and jared’s contract it will be interesting to see how that plays out. i know both guys want the series to go back to being about the two brothers. (they have said so at the cons) they want the season 1-3 formula once again. if they get that a season 9 and 10 is probable. if spn continues on a soap opera track-i think j2 will say good bye after 8. but carver probably knows this-and he knows how to write for dean and sam so i’m looking for a season 9 and 10 with j2 signing for an additional 2 years after season 8. we’ll see though.

  • Freyja

    Besides any Mock schedules released are most likely fake, We saw several different ones last year and none turned out to be true.

    So no I don’t believe any fake schedules that go around..

    Myself I was a little bored with SPN episode last night, I just don’t care about Dick and Kevin.. Loved all the stuff with the alpha vamp though…

  • Brandy

    Kevyn, I’m not the only one saying that Nikita’s ratings are awful and it shouldn’t ve Bren renewed , other people are too & on soilertv with cws rumored fall schedule. If you don’t like reading my posts then either skip them or don’t post here. I have the right to speak my mind and the right to disagree with people. I bet if Secret Circle (which you have bashed from the get go) was getting zcontant 0.4s at the end of the season, you’d be saying it deserves cancellation too. Oh wait, you did say that even when it was getting 0.5-0.6. But just it’s Nikita(a show you like) no one can say its ratings suck without being attacked by you, Sid, or Bondoel/Mikey. I’m sure if SC got renewed over Nikita, you’d be mad as heck, saying it dosent deserve it cause of its bad ratings.It was annoying reading you trashing SC all season too, so pot meet kettle.

  • SJ

    What happened to Undercover Boss? Didn’t it open to a 2.6 in that time slot just three months ago?

  • KS

    @pandorajinel(formerly Erin)

    First of all don’t make this into a medical debate. ;) What ever that sweetener is, it is making brains of people to work less. They are so much addicted to it and they are behaving in a very weird way. If this happens to a lot of people, its ridiculous to say, government sits calm when a product is causing adverse affects.

    Its recently discovered, that two ingredients in Pepsi, are capable of causing cancer. But, government doesn’t ban pepsi. It will never do that for any product, unless it is clearly proved that the substances are carcinogenic or atherogenic(capable of blocking arteries). Whatever adverse affects(like Hypertension, atherosclerosis, etc)you mentioned above they are always a matter of debate among medical professionals. The findings are based on few studies, conducted on a few people. The findings are not very conclusive and we cannot expect the government to act based on this vague findings.

  • Sid

    I just realized something, Brandy is Dawn Ostroff. :D

  • Mickey

    The Finder was great last night…shame FOX cancelled it, any hope of USA Network picking it up?

    Yeah, I got a big kick out of it. It was something fun and fresh, different from all the other procedurals. Walter was a really interesting character, and last night’s was probably the best episode.

    It would be really nice if USA or someone picked it up. Especially since they left things hanging like that (damn them!)

    Wow @ Grimm and CSI:NY being down to Fringe levels.

    Huh, that’s true. Grimm has been known to bounce back to a 1.6 from 1.2s before, but if it stays at Fringe levels that doesn’t bode so well for surviving beyond season 2. It’s already ranked 10 out of 20 on NBC, and I read NBC is going all out with new series next year. This year it only had one passable “hit” with Smash, but if it has more next year, it would push Grimm further down the food chain, possibly to bear snack levels. Maybe if they moved it off Fridays and/or away from the genre competition by putting it on at 8 pm they could return it to higher live numbers.

  • Kavyn

    @Brandy I would have been mad if Nikita were cancelled, but I wouldn’t have blamed Nikita’s cancellation on TSC, nor would I have dragged on this eternal hatred the next day. TSC got cancelled because of it’s terrible retention and/or The CW’s focus on more open/adult programming, not because Nikita was more favoured. Nikita had a lot more things going for it, and had TSC kept it’s ~0.7 ratings it would have stuck around. But it didn’t, it plummeted down to 0.5s and ended up with an adjustment to 0.6, with only a 0.1 difference between it and Nikita.

    All I ask is that you stop being so damn negative. We get it, TSC got cancelled and you’re upset, but stop blaming Nikita. It’s annoying to see your name and automatically assume it’s a bash post about Nikita, which 99% of the time it is.

  • Kavyn

    And PS, I wash bashing TSC when it had 0.8s and 0.9s. I didn’t bash it for it’s ratings, I bashed it because it’s a terribly written and terribly acted show. I’ve seen at least half of the entire series and given it many chances, and aside from the pilot each episode really failed to deliver.

    I was hoping it’d get a second chance alongside Nikita in hopes that the writers were listening and would focus on magic over teen angst and romance. But they didn’t. The love potion thing was beyond stupid to me and the point at which I said “screw this” and stopped tuning in to TSC.

  • Kavyn

    its ratings*

  • tvfreak

    @KS: Ugh. One more reason to never drink Pepsi.

  • Dillan

    Another 0.4? I still don’t understand how Nikita got renewed.

  • KS


    You will probably freak out, when you look at the real picture of food products that cause terrible diseases.

    Don’t worry too much, as long as your consumption is limited and with enough exercise(and hope that your anti-cancer genes are functioning properly).

  • emp

    i like to watch abc’s what would you do?. i am sure its production budget is like a tenth of CSI, Fringe, Grimm and yet wwyd beats them out every week.

  • Brandy

    Kavyn, look at Dillans post, its saying how he dosent get how Nikita got renewed just like mine.I dont blame Nikita for SC being cancelled(SC didnt have good retention or ratings and lost a lot of viewers over the season) but I blame MPs favoritsim. I have been only commenting on Nikitas ratings ,which are bad, not on the actors or writing or quality like you did with SC. MPs favortism is the explainintion when a show hitting 0.4 s in season two when even a nine year old show didnt hit near that low ,gets renewed, esprcially since no other show at 0.4 had ever been renewed.SC didnt great the last few weeks but over the while season it did way better than Nikita and shouldve been renewed.Now Cw stuck with Nikita at 0.4 this season and 0.3s and lower next year. Also read poweranimals post ans some on the first page, they agree with me that Nikita shouldntve been renewed.You and Sid and Mikey act like Nikitas the second coming of Jesus but its low rated tv show that might not make past next season.

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