The Lost series finale easily helped ABC to the easy win Sunday, but the 5.8 adults 18-49 rating was not far above the 5.5 rating of this season’s premiere and scarcely what many fans were expecting.

The overall Lost finale numbers for 9-11:30pm were a 5.8 adults 18-49 rating and 13.5 million average viewers. (Update: the 11-11:30 half hour just added to the table below) Those were the best numbers for a Lost finale since 2007. The Lost – Final Journey clip show averaged a 4.0 adults 18-49 rating from 7-9pm.

While lacking the Internet buzz of the Lost finale, the season finale of Celebrity Apprentice was up 48% vs. last week, scoring a 3.4 adults 18-49 rating, that’s also up 10% vs. last season’s finale, and the best ratings of the three Celebrity Apprentice finales to air on a Sunday. Earlier in the night, Dateline NBC scored a 1.1 adults 18-49 rating, and Minute to Win It had a 1.7 adults 18-49 rating.

The season finale of The Simpsons may have suffered vs. the Lost clip show as it fell 14% vs. last week to a 2.5 adults 18-49 rating. The Cleveland Show finale didn’t fare any better, down 15% vs. last week to a 2.3 rating. Against both the Lost and Celebrity Apprentice finales, the one hour Family Guy finale tumbled too, down 18% vs. last week to a 3.1 rating. At 7pm, ‘Til Death had but  a 0.8 rating.

On CBS, the Brooks & Dunn: The Last Rodeo special averaged a 1.8 adults 18-49 rating.

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
7:00 ABC Lost – The Final Journey (special) 3.8 13 9.393
CBS 60 Minutes 1.0 3 8.829
NBC Dateline NBC 1.0 4 4.992
FOX Til Death 0.8 3 2.166
7:30 ABC Lost – The Final Journey (special) 3.6 12 8.904
NBC Dateline NBC 1.2 4 5.377
FOX The Simpsons (repeat) 1.2 4 2.850
CBS 60 Minutes 1.1 4 9.888
8:00 ABC Lost – The Final Journey (special) 4.1 12 10.094
FOX The Simpsons (finale) 2.5 8 5.739
NBC Minute To Win It 1.5 4 5.010
CBS Brooks & Dunn – The Last Rodeo 1.4 4 8.798
8:30 ABC Lost – The Final Journey (special) 4.6 13 10.994
FOX The Cleveland Show (finale) 2.3 7 4.908
NBC Minute To Win It 1.9 5 6.268
CBS Brooks & Dunn – The Last Rodeo 1.7 5 9.733
9:00 ABC Lost (series finale) 5.6 15 13.094
NBC Celebrity Apprentice (finale) 3.0 8 8.403
FOX Family Guy (finale) 3.0 8 6.125
CBS Brooks & Dunn – The Last Rodeo 2.0 5 10.802
9:30 ABC Lost (series finale) 5.6 14 12.910
NBC Celebrity Apprentice (finale) 3.2 8 8.778
FOX Family Guy (finale) 3.2 8 6.385
CBS Brooks & Dunn – The Last Rodeo 2.1 5 10.999
10:00 ABC Lost (series finale) 5.6 14 13.063
NBC Celebrity Apprentice (finale) 3.6 9 9.757
CBS CSI (repeat) 1.3 3 6.749
10:30 ABC Lost (series finale) 5.7 15 13.087
NBC Celebrity Apprentice (finale) 3.7 10 10.312
CBS CSI (repeat) 1.3 3 6.759
11:00 ABC Lost (series finale) 6.4 19 15.31

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2010 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.


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 which are currently in approximately 24.4% of all U.S. TV households. 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.

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