NBC, ‘America’s Got Talent’ Stay Atop Weekly TV Ratings
Posted: Wednesday, August 31, 2016 – 10:22 AM
The post-Olympic returns of “America’s Got Talent” and “American Ninja Warrior” and the premiere of “Better Late Than Never” accounted for five of last week’s eight most-watched prime-time television programs, helping NBC to its ninth consecutive weekly ratings victory.
The two-hour Tuesday episode of “America’s Got Talent” was the most watched prime-time program between Aug. 22 and Sunday, averaging 11.26 million viewers, according to live-plus-same-day figures released by Nielsen today.
The hourlong Wednesday results show was second, averaging 10.56 million viewers, the week’s only other program to average more than 8 million viewers.
An hourlong episode repeating the previous night’s performance airing that aired before the results show was seventh for the week, averaging 7.13 million viewers, topping all programming on the rival networks except for CBS’ “60 Minutes,” “NCIS” and “The Big Bang Theory.”
An “America’s Got Talent” episode has been the most-watched entertainment program all 11 weeks it has aired this summer.
The premiere of the alternative comedy “Better Late Than Never” was sixth for the week, averaging 7.35 million viewers, the second-most for a premiere this summer, behind ABC’s “The $100,000 Pyramid,” whose premiere averaged 8.09 million.
“The $100,000 Pyramid” had the advantage of being a new version of a series that had aired on and off in daytime and syndication since 1973.
“American Ninja Warrior” averaged a season-high 7.01 million viewers to finish eighth for the week.
NBC won each of first four nights of the week, which combined with first- place finishes all 17 nights of the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, gave it 21 consecutive nightly victories, the most in the history of Nielsen’s People Meter system, which began in 1987.
NBC averaged 5.67 million viewers for its prime-time programming for the week for its ninth consecutive weekly victory, its longest streak since an 18- week streak from the weeks of May 7-Sept. 1, 1997.
CBS was second, averaging 4.6 million viewers, followed by ABC, which averaged 3.6 million. Fox averaged 2.47 million viewers to finish fourth among the major broadcast networks for the 20th consecutive week.
“60 Minutes” was the most-watched non-NBC program for the third consecutive week, averaging 7.99 million viewers, finishing third overall. ABC’s most-watched program was “Celebrity Family Feud,” 14th overall, averaging 5.74 million viewers.
Fox’s most-watched program was its six-minute postgame show for the NFL preseason game between the Arizona Cardinals and Houston Texans, which averaged 5.5 million viewers, 19th for the week.
The TNT crime drama “Rizzoli & Isles” was the most-watched cable program for the second consecutive week, averaging 4.75 million viewers to finish 25th overall.
Fox News Channel was the most-watched cable network for the 11th time in 12 weeks, averaging 2.1 million viewers. HGTV was second, averaging 1.67 million.
Viewership for Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards was a record low among figures available, 3.72 million, 26 percent less than the previous low of 5.03 million set last year. The MTV Video Music Awards were the week’s seventh-most- watched cable program and 51st overall.
The MTV Video Music Awards have been held annually since 1984, but ratings figures are only available since 1994, the first year MTV subscribed to Nielsen’s program ratings.
The week’s most-watched Spanish-language prime-time program was the Univision entertainment news program “Sal y Pimienta,” which averaged 2.12 million viewers, 103rd overall.
As usual, Univision was the most-watched Spanish-language network, averaging 1.63 million viewers. Telemundo was second, averaging 1.44 million, followed by UniMas, which averaged 470,000, Estrella TV, which averaged 190,000, Azteca America, which averaged 100,000, and MundoMax, which averaged 80,000.
The “NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt” averaged 7.84 million viewers to be the most-watched network nightly newscast for the seventh consecutive week.
ABC’s “World News Tonight with David Muir” was second, averaging 7.72 million. The “CBS Evening News” was third, as it has been throughout Scott Pelley’s more than five years as anchor, averaging 6.37 million viewers.
The week’s 10 most-watched prime-time programs were the Tuesday and Wednesday live editions of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent”; CBS’ “60 Minutes,” “NCIS” and “The Big Bang Theory”; NBC’s “Better Late Than Never, the 8 p.m. edition of “America’s Got Talent” and “American Ninja Warrior”; and the Sunday and Wednesday editions of CBS’ “Big Brother.”