6/2/09 Update: I have updated the chart with the broadcast season final numbers through 5/20/09, the official last day of the broadcast season. The original chart contained averages through 5/24/09. All number changes were minor, there were no position changes.

Fox swept the season to date wins in all major age demos (18-49, 18-34, 25-54) for the 2008-9 season, while CBS was the winner for average viewers.

You may have read many reports of CBS finishing in a tie with Fox for adults 25-54. That’s CBS’s PR department using the demo rating (both finished with a 3.8), instead of the average demo viewers (where Fox won narrowly, 4.77 million to 4.71 million). In PR if you’ve got lemons, you make lemonade!

ABC finished second in adults 18-34 and third in all the other categories.

NBC was third in adults 18-34, and fourth everywhere else. Of course, without the Super Bowl numbers, NBC would be even worse. See the boost they received from Super Bowl week alone in the table below. And next year, their numbers, as pathetic as they are likely to be, will be boosted substantially by the Winter Olympics.

final20082009networkstd(click chart for full sized image)

Here is the boost NBC received to its averages this season from Super Bowl week alone.


Super Bowl Week Boost (million)
Viewers 0.770
18-49 0.370
18-34 0.180
25-54 0.360

Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2009 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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