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.

  • Steve

    Nikita had the fact that it airs on friday going for it. That is why it got renewed of TSC. Please quit complaining. TSC problem was it took to long to get good. The first few episodes sucked and people never came back to watch it. TSC might have better ratings then Nikita but it aired after the show with the best ratings on THE CW and it couldn’t even keep half the audience TVD had. If TSC had been renewed it would have been moved to fridays in Nikitas spot and possibly tanked worse than Nikita. So they went with the show tha does well overseas and that gets a lot of talk. Also i thin it helps that Nikita tends to score better with the older audience. I think The CW might try and get away from its teen line up.

  • Ceej

    Why Nikita was saved while TSC was canceled:

    *Nikita is on Friday; TSC was on Thursday.
    *Nikita is a self-starter, TSC had TVD to prop it.
    *Nikita has been rather consistent(between 0.4-0.6 practically the whole season); TSC gradually fell from its’ depths.
    *Nikita has 2 seasons in the can, TSC had only 1.

    In other news, Fringe’s finale was awesome, CSI: NY looks like a goner now, and near the end of Grimm, one of the anchors from KGW(the Portland NBC affiliate) made an appearance as herself, with the 11 PM newscast having a behind-the-scenes story on it.

  • JR35

    Undercover Boss really has declined.

    ABC ruling Friday nights. :)

  • Kavyn

    Nikita had way more than just a friday factor as a reason for its renewal. I’m really sick of repeating these reasons, I’ve said them countless times and it never gets into any of their heads – they’re so adamant on trashing Nikita, it’s pretty ridiculous.

    Nikita isn’t my favourite show, nor is it the best show I’ve ever seen. But Nikita is one of the best shows CW has, and they’d be insane not to note it. The reason Mark Pedowitz likes it is – you guessed it – because it’s a quality show. He didn’t pick a show out of a hat and said “I’ll take this show on as my baby”.

    Also Brandy, I’m not speaking at just you. I feel the same way about Dillon, Pete, and the rest of the people that come on to the Friday ratings for the sole purpose of trashing a show.

  • AC75

    -Friday death slot
    -No lead-in
    -Second season
    -Audience mostly steady

    The Secret Circle
    -Thursday cherry slot
    -Best lead-in possible on the CW network
    -Brand new show
    -Massive demo score loss and poor audience retention

    I don’t watch either show anymore but I think it’s pretty easy to see why Nikita was renewed and TSC wasn’t. I don’t think favoritism has anything to do with it.

  • robin

    one thing that I disagree with is “Nikita is a self-starter, TSC had TVD to prop it.” wrong nikita isn’t a self starter because it also had TVD as a lead in too and wasted it too. but i’m glad it was renewed

  • Sid


    Keep in mind that NIKITA isn’t the only CW bubble show coming back; so is Hart of Dixie. So do us all a favor and keep you 0.3’s and 0.2’s for your show and stop worrying about NIKITA.

  • m

    Just get over it Nikita was renewed and that’s all it matters. Get over it haters. Nikita got another season and if you don’t like it oh well no one cares

  • KS

    I personally welcome the decision of renewing Nikita over The Secret Circle. Nikita is a qualitative show that deserves renewal and is the show, that can lighten up CW in the future. TSC on the other hand, is just the usual teenage show, that is not going to do any good.

  • m2

    Can some please tell me whats up with all of the Nikita hate??? Whats wrong Nikita?? Do you people even watch the show??? Please someone tell me I really want to know

  • Jason

    Holy ouch at Undercover Boss.

  • jj

    Fringe is pathetic as usual. Can’t even beat the cancelled The Finder’s number. Only “good” news is that we only have to tolerate this horrible show for one more season.

  • Restless

    Regarding Supernatural, KS my sister wants you to know that she agrees with you. She said she felt like Dick had pumped his juice into her and made her a ‘zombie’ with how dumb the premise was. She couldn’t suspend her disbelief that only Sam and Dean would notice people suddenly being so much stupider. She too expected the government to be doing something. A throw away comment by Dick about replacing government officials instead of newscasters would have gone a long way.

    Me? My standards are lower haha. I’m more exasperated that the angels are too dumb to whip their swords out and easily chop off the Leviathans’ heads. I know it was to make the Leviathans seem tougher, but it still annoys me.
    And Castiel better not get killed by one of these things in the finale, I will go into a PMSx10 rage. I don’t care if they flash a bulletin underneath saying, “don’t worry, he’s in season 8!” we already had one ridiculous death by Levis in 7.2; once is plenty. No more killing Castiel, seriously. (On a related note, I read one reviewer who theorized Meg was brought back and propped up as an ally just to kill in the finale. Prayer circle for Meg lol)

    But the episode did have some amusing parts. I admit I laughed when Dean had his head slammed into the table, I weren’t expecting that. Crowley and the Alpha Vamp were good too :D Though I also wasn’t expecting the Vamp to be a pedophile. ^^; That was a little skeevy.

  • Dennis

    CSI: NY, what do you doing????

  • Sarasota Bob

    It is amazing how Supernatural remains steady in the ratings despite how stale the show has become. It is remarkable that viewers are satisfied with such pablum.

  • Restless

    What about the episode where the witch coven was worshiping a plain old demon? And Hammer of the Gods where Lucifer easily killed the other religious figures (including the Vodou god Baron Samedi, who surely is closer to the Pagan magic portrayed in the show than Leprechauns would be.) I find it just as likely the Leprechaun was lying as telling the truth; they were after all spreading lies about alien encounters.
    But even if it isn’t inconsistent that witches can knock out a creature they’d never come across before and that somehow Levis can kill a multidimensional wavelength of celestial intent by gut punch, it’s still bloody annoying.

  • AC75


    She couldn’t suspend her disbelief that only Sam and Dean would notice people suddenly being so much stupider

    I didn’t think everyone was suddenly that much “stupider”. I just thought those few people there in the store were zoning out cause they were eating or drinking the laced products right there and then. Like the guy sitting on the bench with the soda. The gen-pop were still out there doing their thing, but these people were chowing down. Wasn’t someone eating a hot-dog?

    I’m probably wrong but that’s what I made of it all. And now I hate myself for getting involved.

  • KS


    You are not wrong.

  • Christy

    It seem’s to be that not that many people like watching tv on Friday Nights. It’s
    really sad how low the ratings are.

  • KS


    Do you think that is the only place in the entire U.S.A. where the people has turned into stupids? Its all over U.S.A. and its a big surprise no one noticed it.

    I am actually expecting some sort of response from Government in season finale.

    By the way, leviathan rule number one is always “NOT TO MAKE ANY NEWS”. But, do you really think this sweetener is disobeying their rule, because, if not now, at least after a few days, a huge crowed is gonna get affected all across the country. Don’t you think some one would notice? Or because its road food and everyone consumes it, situation is going to out of control by the time right people notice it?(Just like the Zombie virus in The Walking Dead).

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