Just like last year, the last Sunday of the broadcast season saw a schedule full of specials and finales. Unlike 2012, the specials and the finales split the difference for the top spots. With wins by Taylor Swift and Madonna, boos from the audience directed at Justin Bieber and a closing performance from Prince, the 2013 Billboard Awards (3.6/10) was up big from last year. On ABC for the third year in a row, the live three-hour Tracy Morgan-hosted ceremony surged up from its 2012 broadcast. The highest-rated show of the night. The Billboard Awards was up 33% among adults 18-49 and up 28% in total viewers to 9.47 million watching. ABC aired the season finale of America’s Funniest Home Videos (1.8/6) before the Billboard Awards. The most watched show of the night with 9.84 million viewers, the original found footage show was up 29% from its May 12 show and up 20% from last year’s finale on May 20, 2012. With 8.863 million watching, ABC won the night among viewers and adults 18-49.
On CBS had ACM Presents: Tim McGraw’s Superstar Summer Night (1.2/3) from 9 PM to 11 PM. The special was even with last year’s Jesse Stone movie, Benefit Of The Doubt starring Tom Selleck. The network had a double shot of 60 Minutes start off its Sunday primetime. The 7 PM (1.4/5) show dipped 7% from last week while the special 8 PM got 1.2/3.
With a voice-over debut appearance by Seth MacFarlane, The Simpsons (2.1/6) ended its 24th season at 8:30 PM flat with last year’s finale. The first part of The Simpsons finale was an 8 PM (1.8/6) special that was down 10% from its May 12 show and down 14% from last year’s finale. Bringing its fourth season to an end, The Cleveland Show kicked off Fox’s animation block on Sunday at 7 PM (0.9/3) with a special followed by the finale at 7:30 PM (1.1/4) which was up 10% from last week. There was more MacFarlane on Fox last night as Family Guy wrapped up its 11th season with a 9 PM (2.6/7) show that was up a slight 5% from last week and even with last season finale on May 20, 2012. The special 9:30 PM (2.5/6) was up 4% from the May 12 show.
There was some country over on NBC last night as well as Donald Trump got to make one last fire on the season finale of All-Star Celebrity Apprentice (1.5/4) on Sunday. Up 15% from last week’s season low, the live two-hour show saw one winner between finalists country singer Trace Adkins and magician Penn Jillette getting $250,000 for the charity of their choice. While up from its May 12 show, Apprentice was down a harsh 32% from last season’s finale on May 20, 2012 to hit its lowest finale yet. However with ratings for live shows like this tending to see an adjustment upwards Apprentice could end up matching its 2010 finale if it hits a 1.6 in final numbers. NBC ran repeats of The Voice (0.7/2) beforehand.
Deadline's Dominic Patten - tip him here.