“American Idol” Overnight Ratings Fall Again Thursday

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Update: Critics loved Wednesday’s “American Idol” premiere. A significant portion of the viewership evidently did not.

Despite facing even less competition than the Wednesday airing, Thursday’s “American Idol” posted a mere 3.8 adults 18-49 rating with 13.2 million viewers. Wednesday’s show delivered a 4.6 with 15.0 million viewers in the comparable fast nationals.

That 17% decline is considerably stronger than the 7% dip endured by last season’s second episode, which drew a 5.6 with 16.3 million viewers.
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Rave reviews for Wednesday’s premiere were not enough to help FOX’s “American Idol” avoid a ratings decline Thursday.

After opening to a 9.4 overnight metered market rating on Wednesday, “Idol” slipped to an 8.3 Thursday. The 12% drop from Wednesday to Thursday nearly mirrored last year’s performance, which saw “Idol”‘s overnight household rating fall from an 11.7 on its first Wednesday to a 10.4 on its first Thursday (down 11%).

Wednesday’s 9.4 overnight number translated to a 4.7 adults 18-49 rating with 15.19 million viewers in the final Nielsen report.

Mirroring last year’s strategy, CBS did not air originals opposite the Thursday “Idol” premiere. Once that block, led by “The Big Bang Theory” at 8PM, returns with new episodes, “Idol” could be subject to an additional ratings hit.