Broadcast primetime live + same-day ratings for Thursday, March 21, 2019

Note: Live NCAA basketball broadcasts on CBS will likely result in greater adjustments than usual for the network in the finals.

The numbers for Thursday:

Time Show Adults 18-49 rating/share Viewers (millions)
8 p.m. Grey’s Anatomy (ABC) 1.4/7 6.89
2019 NCAA Basketball Tournament (CBS) (8-9:30 p.m.) 1.0/5 3.90
Superstore (NBC) 0.9/4 3.89
Gotham (FOX) 0.6/3 2.23
Supernatural (The CW) 0.4/2 1.47
8:30 p.m. A.P. Bio (NBC) 0.5/3 2.33
9 p.m. Station 19 (ABC) 0.9/4 5.60
The Orville (FOX) 0.6/3 2.95
Brooklyn Nine-Nine (NBC) 0.6/3 2.23
Legacies (The CW) 0.3/1 1.01
9:30 p.m. 2019 NCAA Basketball Tournament (CBS) (9:30-11 p.m.) 1.0/5 3.80
Will & Grace (NBC) 0.7/3 2.96
10 p.m. Law & Order: SVU (NBC) 0.8/4 4.27
For the People (ABC) 0.5/3 3.16


The presence of CBS’ March Madness coverage had little-to-no impact over the other shows in the Thursday primetime ratings this week.

CBS’ broadcasts of the Abilene Christian vs. Kentucky and Wofford vs. Seton Hall NCAA games both averaged 1.0 ratings in adults 18-49, with 3.9 and 3.8 million viewers, respectively. This was down slightly from the 1.1 and 4.52 million viewers that the network’s first NCAA Tournament broadcast scored last season.

ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy” held onto the night’s no. 1 spot in both adults 18-49 and total viewers, with the same 1.4 series low rating that it scored last Thursday and 6.89 million viewers. Its lead-out, “Station 19,” managed to tick up one-tenth to a 0.9, while “For the People” maintained its previous 0.5.

On NBC, “Superstore” (0.9), “A.P. Bio” (0.5), and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (0.6) all stayed even week-to-week. “Will & Grace” (0.7) and “Law & Order: SVU” (0.8) each ticked up a tenth.

Elsewhere, it was another steady night for the CW, as both “Supernatural” (0.4) and “Legacies” (0.3) matched their episodes from a week ago. FOX’s “Gotham” (0.6) and “The Orville” (0.6) returned from a week off, even with their most recent outings as well.

Network averages:

Adults 18-49 rating/share 1.0/5 0.9/4 0.7/3 0.6/3 0.3/1
Total Viewers (millions) 3.85 5.22 3.32 2.59 1.24


Late-night metered market ratings (adults 18-49, households):

11:35 p.m.

“Jimmy Kimmel Live”: 0.4/2, 2.0/5

“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”: 0.4/3, 1.9/5

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” – R: 0.4/3, 1.5/5

12:35 a.m.

“Late Night with Seth Meyers”: 0.3/2, 1.1/4

“Nightline”: 0.2/2, 1.0/4

“The Late Late Show with James Corden” – R: 0.2/2, 0.9/4


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.
Fast Affiliate Ratings: These first national ratings are available at approximately 11 a.m. ET the day after telecast. 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. 
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. 
Time Shifted Viewing:
 Program ratings for national sources are produced in three streams of data – Live, Live +Same-Day and Live +7 Day. Time-shifted figures account for incremental viewing that takes place with DVRs. Live+SD includes viewing during the same broadcast day as the original telecast, with a cut-off of 3 a.m. local time when meters transmit daily viewing to Nielsen for processing. Live +7 ratings include  viewing that takes place during the 7 days following a telecast.

Source: The Nielsen Company.

Posted by:Alex Welch

Alex Welch has been writing for TV by the Numbers since January 2016. In his off time he enjoys rewatching old episodes of Game of Thrones and unironically singing along to ABBA. Every now and then, he even does them at the same time. He lives in Los Angeles.

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