Check Out Our New Look

Jimmy Kimmel On Move To 11:35 PM: “Maybe Cut Back On Penis Jokes”

By | Tuesday August 21, 2012 @ 11:27am PDT

Jimmy KimmelEXCLUSIVE: “You can’t do a late night show until you’re 80 years old,” Jimmy Kimmel just joked to me about his Jimmy Kimmel Live moving from midnight to 11:35 PM weekdays starting January 8th. The ABC late night host is only 44 years old now – and that’s why the network is betting that Kimmel can attract younger eyeballs than Jay Leno, 62, and David Letterman, 65. ABC’s own venerable Nightline skews to older demographics as well. “ABC sees the future and thinks it makes sense to entrench ourselves at 11:35 PM now,” Kimmel explained. Anything about the show he might have to change by starting a 1/2 hour earlier? “Maybe cut back on the penis jokes.”

Related: ABC Shuffles Late Night: ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live’ To 11:35 PM, ‘Nightline’ To 12:35 AM

The move comes after a decade of slow build in awareness and ratings and on the heels of landing its first best series Emmy nomination. Kimmel told me that Disney/ABC bosses Bob Iger, Anne Sweeney, and Paul Lee made the decision to move him to 11:35 PM without his involvement. “Truth is it was such a secret operation. There was a lot of discussion without me. First, the decision was made on their part and then they went to the affiliates who embraced the idea enthusiastically. So did sales. Then they called my agent.”

When Kimmel … Read More »

Comments 30

‘Daily Show’ Claims First Weekly Ratings Victory Over ‘Conan’ In Young Demos

Nellie Andreeva

Possibly boosted by State of the Union coverage, Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Jon Stewart posted its first weekly win over TBS’ Conan in adults 18-34, according to the network. Conan had a huge premiere in November, dominating the cable and broadcast late-night field for its first couple of weeks on the air, but The Daily Show has been steadily chipping away at Conan‘s ratings lead for the past two months. It has beaten Conan in total viewers every week since the beginning of December and in 18-49 every week since the beginning of January. For the month of January, The Daily Show is tops in viewers and 18-49, while Conan still has the edge in the 18-34 demo. However, Conan is hourlong and The Daily Show is a half-hour. If compared to the Daily Show/Colbert Report combo that airs in the same 11 PM-12AM slot, Conan is ahead in 18-34 and 18-49 while behind to the Comedy Central shows in total viewers. An interesting footnote – Versus January 2010, The Daily Show is up 9% in total viewers, while Conan is down 3% vs. the January 2010 performance of Lopez Tonight. Here are the standings of the cable late-night talk shows for January as released by Comedy Central (only original telecasts are included as Conan returned from the holiday a week later than most of the other shows, including The Daily Show): Read More »

Comments 34

DVR Viewing Boosts ‘Conan’ To The Top In Young Demos

Nellie Andreeva

According to TBS, Conan got a significant lift from DVR viewing for the period from its Nov. 8 premiere til the end of the year, adding some 361,000 18-49 viewers and 236,000 viewers in the 18-34 demographic. With the time-shifted viewer numbers included, Conan is topping the rankings of all late-night shows on broadcast or cable in the 18-49 and 18-34 demos. (He is behind his broadcast counterparts in total viewers.) Here are the lists: Read More »

Comments (9)

Late-Night Ratings: Leno & Fallon Hit Highs In Viewers, ‘Nightline’ Takes Season Lead

Nellie Andreeva

NBC won three nights in primetime last week, and its ratings gains also carried over to late-night. Both Jay Leno (4.2 million viewers) and Jimmy Fallon (1.9 million) hit season highs in total viewers. for the week of Dec. 13-17. Leno also topped Letterman and Nightline/Jimmy Kimmel in every key category and also prevailed over Conan O’Brien’s TBS show (1.1 rating vs. 0.7) in adults 18-49 for a fourth straight week. Fallon too topped Ferguson and Kimmel in every major category.
Leno widened his margin of victory over Letterman in 18-49 to 22% in viewers (1.402 million vs. 1.149 million), up from a 3% win for the same week last year when Conan was the host of The Tonight Show. Similarly, Fallon topped Late Late Show for the week by 25% (861,000 vs. 689,000), up from last year’s 3%.
Versus the first 13 weeks of last season, Tonight is matching its year-ago 1.0 rating in adults 18-49 and is 6% below its year-ago 18-49 viewership, while CBS’ Late Show is down 10% in rating (0.9 vs. 1.0) and down 14% in 18-49 viewers. In total viewers, Tonight is up 52% versus last season, Late Show is down 15%.
ABC’s Nightline was second for the week among total viewers (3.87 million) and adults 18-49 (1.24 million). Season-to-date, Nightline ranks … Read More »

Comments 72

It’s Official: ‘Conan’ Topped All Late-Night Shows In Its First Week

Nellie Andreeva

It was widely expected but, since the weekly numbers for the broadcast late-night shows are not released until the following Thursday, Conan O’Brien’s weekly victory did not become official until today. For his first week on TBS, Conan drew a 1.6 rating among adults 18-49 vs. a 0.9 for Letterman and Leno, who were tied for a second straight week. Leno also tied the demo performance of The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien the same week last year. In his current second week, Conan has been averaging a 1.0-1.1 demo rating, so he will probably once again top his broadcast rivals for the weekly victory.

Comments 25

LATENIGHT RAT RACE: Conan Slides Again on Thursday; His First Week Tally Still Solid

Nellie Andreeva

Conan just wrapped his first week on TBS slightly above projections, with an average of 2.9 million total viewers, 2.2 million adults 18-49 and 1.5 million adults 18-34. His median age was 32, way younger than his latenight counterparts. “We couldn’t be happier with the great response from Conan’s fans,” said TNT and TBS’ EVP Michael Wright. “Conan is a big hit among young viewers, with a median age that is more than two decades younger than the show’s rivals on broadcast.”

Young demos have been Conan’s strength. Following his big Monday debut that attracted 4.2 million viewers – beating all latenight shows, broadcast and cable – he quickly … Read More »

Comments 47

LATE NIGHT RATE RACE: Leno Takes Weekly Lead Over Letterman While Conan Stabilizes

Nellie Andreeva

After David Letterman in the last week of October posted his first demo win over Leno since Leno’s return to The Tonight Show, Leno bounced back to reclaim the lead in both 18-49 and total viewers for the first week of November. This marks Leno’s first solo first-place finish at the top of the 18-49 rankings in 5 weeks, as Leno and Letterman were tied for 3 weeks before Letterman won outright the week before last. In 18-49, Leno averaged a 1.0 rating vs. a 0.9 for Letterman. The same week last year, Letterman and The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien were tied at 0.9. (In 18-49 viewers, Leno’s average was 1.26 million vs. 1.21 million for Conan last fall; Letterman’s was 1.20 million vs. 1.22 million last year.) The two may switch places again this week as Letterman dominated Leno on Monday night. Among total viewers, Leno averaged 3.9 million for the week, up from 2.3 million for Conan last fall; Letterman drew 3.7 million vs. 3.9 million last year. As for the third airing of Conan’s new latenight show on TBS, his ratings drops were far more moderate than the 33-42% between the premiere and night 2. Last night, Conan drew 2.7 million viewers, down only 3% from the night before. His 18-49 audience was 1.9 million, down 13%. In 18-34,he averaged  1.15 million, down 19%. Here are the averages for the broadcast latenight shows during the week of Nov. 1-5: Read More »

Comments (14)

UPDATE: 4.2 Million Watch Conan’s Debut Which Beats Leno, Letterman, Stewart & Colbert

Nellie Andreeva

2ND UPDATE: It was a great opening for Conan O’Brien on TBS last night. The comedian’s eponymous talk show drew big 4.2 million viewers and massive 3.3 million adults 18-49 and 2.5 million in 18-34 to rank as the top-rated latenight show on TV – broadcast or cable – last night. This was an impressive 2/3+ of the audience he attracted for his debut on NBC’s The Tonight Show in May 2009. Conan ranked as the No.1 latenight talk show telecast of all time on basic cable, beating The Daily Show‘s Oct. 29, 2008 edition. It also topped all other latenight telecasts in basic cable history. The show’s median age was also impressive: 30, the lowest among all latenight shows and half of that for the big broadcast latenight franchises.

Conan towered over its direct competition, Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (1.3 million; 690,000 in 18-49) and The Colbert Report (1 million; 550,000 in 18-49) and also beat its broadcast counterparts, Leno (3.5 million, 952,000 in 18-49) and Letterman (3.4 million; 1.3 million in 18-49). While Leno and Letterman are not direct competitors as their airtime is shifted by a half-hour, beating soundly The Tonight Show must have been gratifying for Conan following his dismissal from the show 9 months ago. Despite having direct latenight show competition for the first time, The Daily Show was pretty resilient in total viewers, down a modest 13% from its season-to-date Monday viewer average. The hit was bigger in the 18-49 demographic, 21%. Colbert at 11:30 PM followed a similar pattern (down 12% in total viewers, 25% in 18-49 from its season average.) Stewart opened his show by congratulating O’Brien on his return to TV until he “realized” Conan was airing opposite him. (video below the chart.) Read More »

Comments 179

Letterman And Leno Still Tied And Down

Nellie Andreeva

CBS’s Late Show with David Letterman tied NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno for the second consecutive time last week after achieving the feat for the first time this season the week before. The 2 late-night shows also pulled in identical ratings in adults 18-34 and adults 25-54 last week, with Leno drawing a slightly larger overall audience, 3.6 million vs. 3.4 million for Letterman. But both were down in 18-49 from the same week last year when The Tonight Show with host Conan O’Brien and Letterman averaged a 1.0/4 in the 18-49 demo. Letterman was also down year-to-year in total viewers (14%) and adults 25-54 (14%) and even in 18-34 (0.6/2). A year ago, he got a ratings boost from the extortion plot story, which broke in early October. Leno’s total audience last week was 44% higher than Conan’s but it was also much older. In 18-34, Leno (0.6/3) was down 33% from Conan’s numbers the same week last year.

Comments (18)

Leno Narrowly Wins Premiere Week

Nellie Andreeva

Maybe it doesn’t matter who sits in the Tonight Show chair after all. NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno posted a 1.0 rating among adults 18-49 during premiere week, matching the performance of The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien the same week last year. (In total viewers, the older-skewing Leno was up 58%). It was a close race among Leno, CBS’ Late Show with David Letterman and Nightline last week. Leno won in both total viewers (3.79 million vs. 3.78 million for Letterman) and adults 18-49, where he was tied with Nightline at a 1.0 rating, followed by Letterman with a 0.9. In actual 18-49 viewers, Letterman was virtually tied with Nightline (1.24 million vs. 1.25 million), while Leno drew 1.33 million. Letterman was down year-to-year in both total viewers (24%) and 18-49 (25%). Last year, Letterman’s average was boosted by an appearance by President Barack Obama, while this year his premiere week guest lineup featured former president Bill Clinton and actor Joaquin Phoenix.

Comments (3)

Leno’s ‘Tonight Show’ Has Lowest Rated Quarter Since Letterman Went To CBS

Nellie Andreeva

leno v letterman v conanThere’s big news on the late night TV battlefront today: The late-night ratings for Q2 – the first full quarter since Leno came back as host after Conan O’Brien was dumped – are in, and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno posted its lowest-rated Q2 since the Late Show with David Letterman launched on CBS in 1993. Additionally, Late Show delivered its most competitive finish against The Tonight Show in viewers and key demographics since 1995. Still, Leno topped Letterman comfortably in the ratings during their first quarter in 9 months as late-night rivals, by 23% in both total viewers and adults 18-49. The Tonight Show averaged 4.0 million viewers and a 1.1/4 in adults 18-49, down 20% in viewers and 31% in adults 18-49 from last year’s second quarter, which was inflated by the big ratings for Leno’s sign-off and Conan O’Brien’s debut.

It was the lowest-rated second quarter for The Tonight Show in total viewers, adults 18-49, and adults 25-54 since 1993. The Tonight Show with Jay Leno is now tracking at demo levels comparable to where the show was with O’Brien as host. Meanwhile,  Late Show too had its smallest audience since 1993. It drew 3.3 million viewers and a 0.9/4 in 18-49, down 7% in viewers and even in 18-49. It was Late Show’s most competitive 2Q position against The Tonight Show in viewers (-746,000) and adults 18-49 (-0.2) since 1995.

So the old guard … Read More »

Comments 420