TV Ratings Wednesday: 'Survivor' Returns Down, 'America's Got Talent' Finale Up, 'Big Brother' Finale Down, 'The X Factor' Steady

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September 19th, 2013

Big Brother Finale Jury

Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 2.5/8 2.2/7 2.0/6 1.3/4 1.0/3 0.4/1
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 1.6/6 1.7/6 1.5/5 1.1/4 0.6/2 0.3/1
Total Viewers (million) 8.127 6.560 9.203 3.386 3.501 1.114

CBS was the number one network in adults 18-49  while NBC was on top with total viewers.

On CBS, the 90 minute premiere of Survivor scored a 2.6 adults 18-49 rating down 19 percent from a 3.2 for last fall’s premiere on September 19 but up 8 percent from last spring’s premiere. It was the show's lowest rated fall premiere ever. Your predictions were too optimistic. The 90 minute season finale of  Big Brother garnered a 2.4 up 4 percent from last week's 2.3 adults 18-49 rating but down 4 percent from a 2.5 for last season’s finale on Wednesday, September 19, 2012.

On NBC, The Million Second Quiz notched a 1.2 adults 18-49 rating, down 8 percent from last week’s 1.3 adults 18-49 rating. The two hour season finale of America’s Got Talent earned a 2.5 up 14 percent from last week's 2.2 adults 18-49 rating and up 4 percent from a 2.4 for last year’s season finale on Thursday, September 13, 2012.

On FOX, The X Factor matched the 2.2 adults 18-49 rating for last week’s premiere.

Overnight ratings for Wednesday, September 18, 2013:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating/Sh Viewers (millions)
8:00 CBS Survivor - Season Premiere (8-9:30PM) 2.6/8 9.52
FOX The X Factor (8-10PM) 2.2/7 6.56
NBC The Million Second Quiz 1.2/4 4.92
ABC The Middle - R 1.0/3 4.12
CW Arrow - R 0.3/1 1.15
8:30 ABC The Middle - R 1.0/3 3.93
9:00 NBC America's Got Talent (9-11PM) 2.5/7 11.34
ABC Modern Family - R 1.2/4 3.73
CW Supernatural - R 0.4/1 1.08
9:30 CBS Big Brother - Season Finale (9:30-11PM) 2.4/7 6.73
ABC Modern Family - R 1.5/4 4.10
10:00 ABC Nashville - R 0.7/2 2.56




In Late-Night Metered Markets Wednesday night:

  • In Nielsen's 56 metered markets, household results were: "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," 3.1/9; CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman," 1.8/5 with an encore; and ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 1.7/5.
  • In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, adult 18-49 results were: “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” 1.0/5; "Late Show," 0.5/3 with an encore; and "Jimmy Kimmel Live," 0.6/3.
  • From 12:35-1:05 a.m. ET, ABC's "Nightline" averaged a 1.0/4 in metered-market households and a 0.4/3 in 18-49 in the Local People Meters.
  • From 12:35-1:35 a.m. ET, "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (1.6/6 in metered-market households) beat CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (0.9/3).  In the 25 markets with Local People Meters, "Late Night" (0.6/3 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 with an encore and a 0.3/3 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters.


Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2013 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.You can see TV ratings from other recent Overnight ratings reports here.Definitions: 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.

  • r0ckmypants

    @Ultima – Also, when an expected failure succeeds and is renewed, it switches up to “next year will be the real test!”

    So true… so, so true.

  • Freddy Arrow


    ““all broadcast primetime (minus football) is continuing it’s multi-decade audience decline.”

    And why do you think that is?

    The networks not giving a rat’s ass what the viewers want to see and continue to put up crap, cheaply produced as possible. Chasing after that elusive demo that aren’t watching live.”

    And you really think the networks haven’t been doing that for the last 40 years? As Ultima said, more choices and the ability to time shift our viewing can pretty much explain it.

    For the last decade, I’ve only watched commercials during the Super Bowl or when I’m veiwing something outside of my house (usually sports at a friend’s house or at a bar).

  • Ultima

    @Fake Me Out
    will we be too busy trying to tread water as the oceans have flooded most of the planet after the ice caps melted

    While predicting what the technological and entertainment landscape will look like in 20 years is basically impossible, this part is easy!

    Since we’re heading into a global cooling cycle, by 2033 there will be massive panic about the impending ice age and a bunch of brainwashed college kids who have never heard of global warming saying we’re all flat-earthers for not believing in our inevitable catastrophic frozen death! ;)

  • Ultima

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Survivor needs to move to summer with BB if it wants to survive.

    Why? It’s CBS’ highest rated reality series and outperforms enough of their scripted content that it’s in absolutely no danger of cancellation.

  • Evan

    I knew Survivor was gonna be down ever since Fans vs. Favorites 2. Survivor is killing the show with all these gimmicks and I dont know many people that were excited about this Blood vs. Water twist. To me it sounded so dumb but Probst and CBS refuse to listen. I knew when the cast for Fans vs. Favorites 2 was announced that it wouldn’t do as well. They really need to do an All-stars season again to bring the ratings back. Big Brother did pretty good, I was expecting a number around there. The whole season had been around 2.0-2.3 and the final 3 was very underwhelming so I knew that it wouldn’t go out with really huge numbers.

  • Nasir

    Predicted a 2.6 for Survivor. Hope it goes up as the season goes on. And please cast better people for BB16!!

  • Fake Me Out


    …Since we’re heading into a global cooling cycle, by 2033 there will be massive panic about the impending ice age and a bunch of brainwashed college kids who have never heard of global warming saying we’re all flat-earthers for not believing in our inevitable catastrophic frozen death!

    I have come into possession of the complete run of the 1970s In Search of… hosted by Leonard Nimoy and while watching was surprised to see one of the episodes (S02E23) dealt with the impending Ice Age (I either missed it or long ago forgot seeing it) … now my theory is the governments knew it was coming and so began a program of pumping extra green house gases into the atmosphere in order to prevent the advance of the ice shield … and in typical government fashion they screwed the pooch, went too far and now we’re all gonna drown if the hurricanes, tornado’s, fires & floods don’t get us first! ;-)

  • Barbarossa

    Pity about the survivor numbers. It was the first one I’ve watched in a few years and I enjoyed it.

  • William

    I’am so glad that white kid didn’t win AGT- he was as funny as having diarrhea on your wedding night. And as usual they sent all the people with real talent home…

  • Anthony Parello (AP076)

    @ Oliver

    There is just about as many hours of scripted programming today as in 1998, 1988, 1978 and 1968.
    As Ultima and Holly have repeatedly pointed it is movies and newsmagazines that were replaced from the 80s and 90s and variety shows from the 70s and 60s.

    Is it not apparent from the ratings that people WOULD rather watch tired old reality than repeats?

  • jr YOU WING

    Total viewers is all that matters. This 18-49 age is a crock. People 18-30 spend peanuts on this economy and are in debt up to their eyeballs. People 35-65 drive this economy and buy the houses, cars, appliances, etc., not the cell phone crowd who buys apps. They should do away with 18-49 and replace it with 35-65.

  • Oliver

    @Anthony Parello (AP076)

    1. I would have been been equally annoyed if 3 networks were all airing movies and news magazines all evening.

    2. I’m speaking on behalf of myself.

  • Jose

    Survivor was actually very good last night. At least the numbers are up from Caramoan’s premiere (that season..ugh) I hope ratings go up in future episodes

  • Nathan Smith

    Way to go, Kenichi!

    AGT rocks!

  • Anthony Parello (AP076)

    @Oliver who posted
    “I love it when people are amazed by the idea that people would rather watch repeats than a bunch of tired unscripted shows they don’t like!”

    Then perhaps your original comment should have read:
    “I love it when people are amazed by the idea that I would rather watch repeats than a bunch of tired unscripted shows I don’t like!”

    All available evidence is that almost all of the reality shows that aired this summer outperformed any repeats shows. Thank G-d you are not in charge of summer programming if this is your perspective. You would have lost quite a lot of advertising dollars for any network you worked at.

  • Melanie P.

    Oh well, Andy won BB. At least he admitted to everyone why he stabbed them in the back, but I still wasn’t that impressed. I was only happy that Elissa won favorite houseguest! :)

  • Patrick G

    On the one hand, I’m surprised “Survivor” was down so much. On the other hand, after 27 seasons, it’s no wonder! I have been watching since the first summer season in Borneo, more out of curiosity because there was nothing else new on TV in the summer of 2000 when “Survivor” premiered. I have continued to watch because of the gorgeous and lush tropical locales the show always transports its viewers to (Though I turned off “Survivor: Africa” after the first boring, dusty episode). The “game” itself is of secondary interest. This show has always reminded me of the 70’s “Battle of the Network Stars,” so it is entertaining in the same vein. Maybe they should actually do a season with TV stars from different networks!! I like how the producers have tried to mix things up in these later seasons, but ENOUGH with bringing back repeat players!! This is why people are tuning out!! The show needs to go back to teams of total strangers to regain its success. And, how about finally setting it on a beautiful AMERICAN tropical paradise?! It’s time for “Survivor: Hawaii,” “Survivor: American Samao,” “Survivor: Virgin Islands” and the like!! Talk about a ratings boost then !! Make it so ;)

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