TV Ratings Monday: 'House' Finale Up, 'AGT' and 'The Bachelorette' Slide

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May 22nd, 2012


Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 2.6/7 2.5/7 2.4/7 1.5/4 1.5/4 0.2/1
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 1.9/6 1.8/6 1.9/6 1.5/4 1.5/4 0.2/1
Total Viewers (million) 7.232 10.634 7.422 5.709 3.862 0.563


NBC was the top rated network in adults 18-49 while ABC was number one  in total viewers.

On FOX, the series finale of House garnered a 2.9 adults 18-49 rating, (in line with what most of you predicted) up from last week's 2.2 rating for the series' penultimate episode. This marks the best ratings for the series since January.  The retrospective that preceded it earned a 2.0 adults 18-49 rating.

CBS was all repeats until 10PM, when they aired an hour-long special, Clash of the Commercials: USA vs. The World, which earned a 1.4 adults 18-49 rating.

On NBC, America's Got Talent earned a 3.1 rating, down considerably from the 3.7 adults 18-49 rating it received last week. The series premiere of American Ninja Warrior on the network  scored a 2.4 among adults 18-49.

On ABC, Dancing With the Stars  earned a 2.8 rating, up two-tenths from last week's  2.6 adults 18-49 rating.  The Bachelorette  earned a 2.4, down two tenths from last week's 2.6 rating.

The CW was all repeats for the evening.


Late-night results are below the primetime data.

Broadcast primetime ratings for Monday, May 21 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM NBC America's Got Talent 3.1 9 9.534
ABC Dancing With the Stars 2.8 8 16.451
FOX House Retrospective 2.0 6 6.100
CBS How I Met Your Mother -R 1.3 4 4.084
CW One Tree Hill -R 0.3 1 0.602
9:30 PM CBS 2 Broke Girls -R 1.6 4 4.649
9:00PM FOX House (Series Finale) 2.9 7 8.700
ABC The Bachelorette (9-11 PM) 2.4 6 7.725
NBC American Ninja Warrior (9-11 PM) 2.4 6 6.081
CBS Two And A Half Men -R 2.0 5 7.182
CW One Tree Hill -R 0.2 1 0.524
9:30PM CBS Mike & Molly -R 1.7 4 6.382
10:00PM CBS Clash of the Commercials: USA vs. The World 1.4 4 5.979

via NBC press notes:

In Late-Night Metered Markets Monday night:

  • In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 2.7/7; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 2.1/5; and ABC's combo of "Nightline," 3.0/7; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.6/5. 
  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 1.0/4; "Late Show," 0.5/2; "Nightline," 0.9/4; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.6/3.
  • At 12:35 a.m., "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.4/5 in metered-market households) beat CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.1/4).  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 0.9/4 in metered-market households and a 0.3/3 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters.

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

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

You can see TV ratings from other recent Overnight ratings reports here.


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.
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.

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.)

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.

  • Michael Rae

    I hate the ratings of the House finale…..it should earn like 18-23 million viewers……is nobody watching TV right now?

  • SteveO

    It’s absolutely crazy that these 8 season long shows cannot manage high ratings in a SERIES finale. First DH now House. Wow.

  • Ultima

    @Michael Rae
    I hate the ratings of the House finale…..it should earn like 18-23 million viewers……is nobody watching TV right now?

    House hasn’t pulled numbers like that since season 4…

  • Ben

    Although House did pretty good, I would of like to seen it do better.

  • Phil

    House’s legs were Wilson and Cuddy. When Cuddy was removed, House died.

  • Ultima

    It’s absolutely crazy that these 8 season long shows cannot manage high ratings in a SERIES finale

    Crazy? Maybe. Normal? Definitely. It’s crazy that people continue to be surprised that shows well past their prime don’t pull massive numbers for their series finales.

  • Tina

    “AGT needs Piers Morgan back.”

    AGT won the demo race last night against DWTS, which was going into its finals and won the night. AGT never aired against real competition, so AGT is doing really well.

  • Don

    I agree with the people who say House was over when Cuddy left. And not seeing her last night was a huge let down

  • Cleberson

    Where’s the soap opera audiençe Carrssel do SBT?

  • Mia

    TPTB @ House didn’t give a care about the fans until it was too late, which is such a shame. Sounds like they attempted and did an ok job @ trying to make it up or appease to all fanbases and hardcore show fans (except for Huddy) in the finale by bringing even dead people back. But, no Cuddy was awkward and leaves a big gaping hole in House (the show & the character) for me.

    That was part of the problem 4 me during the last few seasons…wasted lots of film on nonsense & neglecting subjects like House’s father & etc. Add to that,; treating a great actress like Lisa Edelstein like crap was not cool after 7 years of dedicated work/service. I wish I knew what really happened that FOX/NBCUniversal wouldn’t even want her back 4 the finale. Damn!

  • Nadine Harris

    I can only speak for myself. I was once a huge House fan. I began to really find the whole premise untenable after several years, because, if you’re a psychopath (and they were always very truthful in portraying him as exactly that) — then there can never be any kind of even incremental development in character. It becomes the same old, same old — all the time. I was really bored with it. I tried to watch the finale, but when it’s gone — it’s just gone.

  • SteveO

    @Ultima, I agree with you that it is normal. But it’s just weird to me that people don’t tune in for series finales for these long-running shows, even if they are out of their prime. It’s more sad than surprising.

  • Toucan

    I find it odd that people who haven’t watched a show in years tune in to the finale, but they do. I did expect House to do better given the lack of competition. DH had full competition and did better.

  • Tony

    I’m happy that House and DH got decent finale numbers. Nothing like the numbers these shows use to pull but dignified finales nonetheless.

  • Philipe

    “House’s finale did really bad. The world was watching the series premiere of Carrossel last night.”


  • Nadine Harris

    btw, I’m glad that this at least frees Hugh Laurie up to do something else — hopefully something wildly different where he doesn’t have to sound like someone who grew up in Pennsylvania anymore.

  • touchsucks

    in 2010.5.25,the ratings of season final of 24 is 2.6?2.9

    the season final of lost is 5.8

  • Ultima

    @Nadine Harris
    btw, I’m glad that this at least frees Hugh Laurie up to do something else — hopefully something wildly different

    Wildly different from House, yes; wildly different from his past work, probably not. He’s reuniting with longtime British sketch comedy partner Stephen Fry for a new project.

  • Todd

    Thought it was a very fitting ending with House and Wilson riding off together. Good numbers! The first hour of House was great with the retrospective. Hugh Laurie did a great job showing the behind the scenes of a making of a show.

  • Mia

    That might be true that there should be more ratings for series finales but unless TPTB of TV shows can repeat what Law & Order has done, fans get bored after a while. And, once fav a characters start to leave and stories get repetitive, fans just give up and find other things to occupy that TV time.

    House will always be a bittersweet topic for me b/c it used to be so good & joy to watch.

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