Thursday Ratings: American Idol Declines in Double Digits Again

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Ratings are in from TVByTheNumbers. Idol is once again down in double digits compared to last year’s Thursday episode.

ith the 5 English broadcast networks all in new epdisodes (first time in 2012?), Fox topped the nights adults 18-49 ratings, but American Idol posted year to year decline similar to Wednesday night. And once the night of “Must See TV”, NBC beat Univision by just 0.2 points among adults 18-49.

The second night of American Idol drew a 5.6 adults 18-49 rating, down 28% vs. a 7.8 rating for the first Thursday night last season, although it was down just 20% vs. the first Thursday hour last season. The half hours for American Idol were a 5.1 and a 6.1 adults 18-49 rating. With a substantially stronger lead in than last week, The Finder was up to a 2.2 adults 18-49 rating, increasing 29% vs. just a 1.7 for its premiere last week following Bones.

8:00PM

FOX American Idol 5.6 15 17.738
CBS The Big Bang Theory 5.2 14 15.711
ABC Wipeout 1.8 5 5.870
NBC 30 Rock 1.6 4 4.084
CW The Vampire Diaries 1.1 3 2.718

8:30PM

CBS Rob 3.6 9 11.726
NBC Parks & Recreation 2.0 5 4.305

9:00PM

ABC Grey’s Anatomy 3.4 8 9.318
CBS Person Of Interest 3.3 8 14.336
NBC The Office 2.9 7 5.981
FOX The Finder 2.2 5 6.779
CW The Secret Circle 0.7 2 1.657

9:30PM

NBC Up All Night 1.9 5 4.025

10:00PM

CBS The Mentalist 2.9 8 14.019
ABC Private Practice 2.1 5 6.097
NBC The Firm 0.9 2 3.408

 
  • Anonymous

    Disappointing, but I think a lot of it has to do with it being The Big Bang Theory’s 100th episode and the Republican presidential debate. Hopefully Sunday’s episode will look better.

  • Anonymous

    Wow. We’re only the 2nd show in this season & the ratings are already below 20 million. Sunday’s episode should help since last year 50 million people watched the championships.

    I actually think with all the good scripted shows now like Modern Family people are watching less of reality shows & talent shows than before.

    I love Idol & have watched it since the beginning. Idol needs a great group of contestants this year with personality. If the contestants are good, but boring like S9 Idol is in trouble. They need to figure out how to improve the ratings quickly or they will actually not be the #1 show this year.

  • Anonymous

    It’s not just The Big Bang Theory, especially since that show was down a tenth of a point in comparison to last week.  The amazing thing about the demo loss is that no show has ever been close to AI in that category.  Even last year, AI had double the rating of the second ranked show for the year.  It’s odd to see a non sports show not only come close to AI, but overtake it.  

    I think the lack of drama last season helped setup this decline.  The show needed a kinder and nicer tone, but they’ve taken it too far.

  • http://twitter.com/cruzceleste Andrea

    I guess no program can live for ever… except Law & Order, I´m sure there still have a season on that show when it got cancelled…

  • Hazehel

    I had expected X-Factor to affect Idol ratings, but never by so much, and so quickly.  I’m wondering if Fox execs are now worrying about a doomsday scenario where X-Factor rating drops significantly next season, but then it had already fatally damaged Idol at the same time so that Idol ratings spiral downwards rapidly, and they ended up with one middling show and one struggling show instead of one huge show, and end up having to consider axing one show.

  • Anonymous

     I think this should be the last season. Idol completes 10 years now and it’s still the numbers 1 show, so this would be a good time to end and still look good. People just can’t stand singing competitions anymore (X Factor and The Voice included) so neither the 3 of them will see big ratings ahead.
    Also, Fox made a huge mistake by renewing X Factor, it was a flop and only contributed to stagnate those kind of shows, it totally took the excitement of waiting 6 months to watch another season.
    I will still watch it because I’m a fan (and I wanna know if it will finally have another girl winner), but I still think it should end now.

  • Anonymous

    I thought there was a good amount of drama last season-JLo losing it over Chris Medina’s elimination, Casey’s first elimination, Pia’s elimination, Haley and the judges, and James’s elimination.

  • http://www.velvetspark.com Jordan Seltzer

    How far will the ratings drop? That will be the interesting thing to watch.

  • Anonymous

    The original Law & Order lasted 20 years, but it was never the #1 show or even in the top 10 for it’s last 10+ seasons. Idol has been the #1 show for a while & it’s in it’s 11th season. NCIS is still averaging over 15 million viewers in it’s 9th season. Many of the top 10 shows have been on for 5+ years. It’s harder for a young show to get great ratings now.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/NO4G73GL7KDSP4K3ERYEZJ5FYY Joseph

    “I think this should be the last season. Idol completes 10 years now and
    it’s still the numbers 1 show, so this would be a good time to end and
    still look good.”

    Still look good? FOX couldn’t care less about that… if the show is still bringing in money it stays on TV. Period. I’ve said this for years, but I think AI gets at least fifteen seasons before the start seriously considering letting it go.

    Hell, Survivor is still on CBS and it’s ratings are middling. Doesn’t matter. It’s cheap, easy, and it makes money. Why get rid of it?

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/NO4G73GL7KDSP4K3ERYEZJ5FYY Joseph

    “I think this should be the last season. Idol completes 10 years now and
    it’s still the numbers 1 show, so this would be a good time to end and
    still look good.”

    Still
    look good? FOX couldn’t care less about that… if the show is still
    bringing in money it stays on TV. Period. I’ve said this for years, but I
    think AI gets at least fifteen seasons before the start seriously
    considering letting it go.

    Hell, Survivor is still on CBS and
    it’s ratings are middling. Doesn’t matter. It’s cheap, easy, and it
    makes money. Why get rid of it?

  • Anonymous

    They won’t end it this season, other shows would still love to have these numbers. Even if it goes to 2 or 3, so what?

  • http://twitter.com/tinawinabina Tinawina

    Now TV By the Numbers is saying it’s a tie until they get the adjusted numbers for Big Bang Theory. That said, the fact that anything came close at all is a big deal, since that never happens.

    I told mj on EW chat last night that I expected the rating not to be
    good. My entire timeline was about the Republican debates, which never
    happens. LOL That and basketball.

    Anyway, the sorta good news is that it is the same percentage drop from year to year as yesterday. So in that sense it is expected. The bad news is, this show is no longer the Deathstar guaranteed to slay all competition. Still a huge hit, but not invinsible.

    Now lets see if the slide stops at 25% or if it gets worse form here. The show is going nowhere however…. it would still be a hit with half the viewers gone.

  • Anonymous

    I think there was little drama who would win. Everyone knew Scotty would win. Heck, I knew Scotty would win once it got to top 11. It was one of the most obvious winners. Also, as well as Scotty has done so far I think people are getting more & more disappointed with the voting & how the cute guys always seem to win when many people think there are more deserving winners (Haley).

  • Hazehel

    I think the lack of drama last season helped setup this decline.  

     
    I doubt that.  Last season was a successful one, the ratings did better as the season progressed than previous seasons, so whatever it was that caused the big decline, it has nothing to do with last season.

    I do think with so many singing shows, people are just tired of them.  Personally speaking, even as a fan of the show, I don’t feel any excitement or interest over this new season.   There are just too many of these shows.
      
    I  would agree about the “nicer tone” being damaging but that’s nothing with last season.  This season it’s very tedious to see them saying “yes”, “yes”, and “yes” over and over again (and to singers who aren’t so great), so much so that one of the few I can remember is the miner guy they rejected. Who wants to watch a boring show like that?

  • Anonymous

    I think this should be the last season. Idol completes 10 years now and it’s still the numbers 1 show, so this would be a good time to end and still look good.

    I don’t think Idol will get canceled. FOX still wants to be the #1 network. It will never be #1 with just XF because all their other shows don’t get great ratings so it won’t be able to compete with CBS. CBS still has The Amazing Race & Survivor, 2 reality shows with 20+ seasons. Both still get decent ratings. CBS could probably replace them & get 2 scripted shows with better ratings, but both of the reality shows are 2 staples in the reality show genre.

    I think when Idol goes off the air it will be on it’s own terms. They will end it when they feel they should.

  • bbf546

    Oh No :((( This season is going down hill in ratings.. It could get scary as season goes on

  • Anonymous

    People are always going to think that there are more deserving winners.  Everyone will always think that their favorite is the best, and for some reason, people can’t understand that not everyone will feel the same way, or like the same contestants.  For goodness sake, there are people who are still mad that Fantasia beat Diana.  That’s just how human nature is.

    That being said, the show will reach a wider and more diverse audience if people believe that anyone has a chance to win, no matter what their race, sex, style of music, background, sexual orientation is.  

    Hazehel said: I doubt that.  Last season was a successful one, the ratings did better as the season progressed than previous seasons, so whatever it was that caused the big decline, it has nothing to do with last season.

    As with every show, ratings have more to do with the previous season than the current one.  For example, Glee.  Most would agree that it is better this year than it was last year, but the ratings are much lower.  Those who stopped watching don’t know that the show is better, all they know is that they weren’t entertained by the 2010-2011 episodes.

    It’s not that last season of AI wasn’t good, but there was a change in the judging that didn’t make the audition rounds very enjoyable.

  • Anonymous

    It isn’t just the overabundance of singing contestant shows, reality shows in general are dropping in interest and audience favor. Traditionally, economic hard times gives rise to pure escapism entertainment (such as the gilded age of musicals during the Depression). The situational comedy is the “in” thing on TV right now. Folks want to laugh rather than see someone get rejected -or worse humiliated – at the end of a long stressful day.

    Fewer folks being asked to watch more things is bound to result in a drop in ratings. Idol must now provide a real reason to watch the show if they hope to stop the loss.

  • Anonymous

    Mmmm…that drop has to shake them up abit. I think a)XFactor and The Voice are really hurting Idol b)the new improved, nicer Idol is a bore.  If they end up with a bunch of nice, talented kids with the judges being nicey, nice all season I can see the ratings basically off 30% for the whole season.

    At least with TVoice , there’s a little drama with the judges. Idol has all the drama of a morning show where the hosts pretend to love each other and laugh at each other’s jokes.

  • Anonymous

    I think it’s premature to even suggest that this should be Idol’s last year! There are many shows that would kill to have the numbers that Idol is pulling, irregardless of the decline of the first two shows. Additionally, IMO, the format for Idol machine is unmatched as far as quality in finding a top 12 and displaying them as both everyday people and performers as the season progresses. In addition to this Sunday’s telecast,  I believe Idol’s numbers will receive a bump after the auditions are completed. Viewers may not want to commit their time to the show until the top 24 to 12 is determined thus avoiding the disappointment of rooting for someone during the audition phase only to have them not make it through the Holllywood rounds. Even with the plethora of talent/singing shows now on tv, when the day does come that Idol is not renewed, I will be very sad!   

  • Anonymous

    Wow, I predicted a while ago that Idol would take a hit because of all these new singing competitions, but I never imagined that it would dip below 20 million viewers in just 2 nights. This season is not looking good on the ratings front. They can maybe turn things around if they have a strong top 10, but I think the problem has to do with fatigue of singing competitions in general and the lack of buzz for S11.

  • http://twitter.com/BIackAdam Theo Adam

    Not surprising, it was up against Big Bang Theory and it was up against Modern Family yesterday. Maybe if we move to Monday and Tuesday, we just might be able to score a hit, plus, if we had the finale on Tuesday, It would give the winner an extra day of single sales. :) 

  • Anonymous

    No way is this close to Idol’s last year! Simon Fuller is pretty smart. If this year is a disaster he’ll find a way to retool for S12. Although I think the best days are behind this show.  If Ryan leaves though that’ll really hurt.

    I think they should start thinking of a 4th judge to shake things up abit.

  • Anonymous

    If Idol moved to Mon./Tues., they would be against The Voice & DWTS starting in March. That would be a tough timeslot & they would be against one of their competitors.

    The Voice debuts after the Super Bowl which should have big numbers. But after that I expect it to do worse than people expect considering the buzz. I think people have just got tired of reality/talent shows & people are going back to watching scripted shows.

  • koshka

    well with a dip like that they’ll surely be dipping into the sob story lines.. like last year’s wasn’t enough. *sigh* I hope this doesn’t happen, I’m so over the drama and backstories. Makes it harder to stay tuned in. 

  • Anonymous

    AI still has better ratings than The Big Bang Theory and Modern Family.  Both shows ratings fell from their last original episode, which was probably due to airing against American Idol.  American Idol is still going to be either the topped ranked show for the year, or at least in the top 5.  The only issue is that it is no longer dominating every other show on the air, but it is still getting great ratings. It’s really not that big of a problem.

  • Anonymous

    This is not surprising. This is an old show and adding nothing new. The judges are boring. Randy Jackson mocking contestants is mean spirted and a turn off. He does not have the charm of Simon Cowell and never will.

  • Anonymous

    “Hell, Survivor is still on CBS and it’s ratings are middling. Doesn’t matter. It’s cheap, easy, and it makes money. Why get rid of it?”

    Exactly. the reason there are so many “reality” shows is because they are cheap to produce. Even middling (or crappy) reality shows have longer shelf lives than much better scripted dramas that don’t find an immediate audience because of cost considerations.

    Example: The Sing Off (sadly) had terrible ratings but finished its third season, while the Playboy Club show that followed it (forget the name) was cancelled after 2 sepisodes.

    American Idol is still the top – or near the top in ratings among the most desirable demos to the commercial sponsors. It may be waning and aging but as long as enough of the right viewers tune in the watch, the show will go on.

    Honestly, I don’t think it’s the presence of “better” singing competition shows on Network TV that are affecting Idol’s ratings because I didn’t like X Factor nearly as well and didn’t watch the Voice the first season (highly subjective), but I think there is some singing competition show fatigue that has (or will) affect all the singing competition shows.

    Judging by the good receipts for the American Idol tour this season and the performance of Scotty’s album in the current economy where physical CDs don’t sell anywhere near the numbers, American Idol still has proven it can deliver commercial success. I don’t think it’s going anywhere for a while.

  • Anonymous

    I thought Simon was very boring.

  • Anonymous

    When Simon left Idol, it lost its edge, its humor, its life, as far as I’m concerned. I can’t think of anything more boring than watching the current crop of judges fawn over marginal talent and listening to Tyler saying “that’s beautiful” over and over when he looks stoned. JLo is a bore and there’s no chemistry between the judges like there was with Paula and Simon. And I can’t help but smile when I think of all the manipulation the show has slipped in on an unaware general audience – some not so subtle, actually. Karma comes full circle. Yes, indeed. :)

  • iani

    I never imagined that it would dip below 20 million viewers in just 2
    nights. This season is not looking good on the ratings front.

    And I imagine a very happy Simon, rubbing his hands while reading those ratings, hoping in 2-3 years AI is gone and it lives more room for The Voice- Factor. More attitudes in studying for next few years, which angles are best-looking for judges and more…It’s time for American Idol to go, hope doesn’t go to 13th one, lol, under or over…

  • Anonymous

    I love that the same people who loved beating up on X-Factor’s ratings are now defending Idol’s slip. Sure, it beat X-Factor greatly still, but TBBT almost beat it. :|

  • Anonymous

    If Paula and Simon were so special, then why did the x Factor’s first season flop?

  • Anonymous

    xfactor didn’t flop. It did well for a new reality show first time out. It will build likely the way AGT did if the show is managed right. 

  • Blower

    1. The fatique of singing competition
    2. No massive change from last season
    3. The Judges = zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
    4. Male winner over and over again (yeah i know this is debatable)

  • http://twitter.com/svmreiter Susan Reiter

    I am not surprised either – someone else here said it already – same old same old and last season it was hard to keep following along.  The show is getting old.  Still getting a lot of viewers but maybe won’t be the juggernaut it has been.  Last season was just plain boring for me, sadly.

  • Hazehel

    As with every show, ratings have more to do with the previous season than the current one. 

    Not quite.  It has to do with what happened before the show started, and that include previous season, but not exclusively so.  We know that, for example, Season 9 was considered a bad season, but Season 10 didn’t start as badly as this season, so what is the reason?  You can argue about people being curious about the new judges in Season 10, but that would last only so long (for example Season 9 new judge Ellen didn’t help to lift that season later), and if that is true, it actually suggests that the later recovery of Idol in season 10 is even more remarkable.  People were interested in the contestants despite the uninspiring judging from judges.  I don’t see how it is possible that Season 10 can be seen in a negative light despite the judging, your comment can only make sense if the ratings had dipped compared to Season 9, it didn’t, in fact it rose.

    The only thing that would make sense would be what happened after Season 10 ended and before Season 11 started – i.e. X-Factor started.  I have said before (when Simon decided to quit Idol 2 years ago) that I don’t think a network can sustain having 2 very similar shows like Idol and X-Factor together, I do think we are seeing the effect of that.

  • Anonymous

    “If Paula and Simon were so special, then why did the x Factor’s first season flop?”X Factor did not flop. It did well for a new show.

  • http://twitter.com/svmreiter Susan Reiter

    This too – the obvious Scotty victory made the finale very anti-climactic.

  • Anonymous

    I agree people always think they are more deserving winners. People now think J-Hud should have won since she has won an Oscar & Grammy. But J-Hud was inconsistent during Idol. Fantasia deserved to win. 

    I agree that if people believed that anyone has a chance to win it would reach more of an audience. However, I don’t think many people think anyone actually has a chance to win. I think people realize that a guy will win & that’s the problem even if the girl is better.

  • Anonymous

    Of course, at a point each season is going to be responsible for its own ratings, which is why we’ve seen the Glee ratings stabilize recently, even though they are still well below last year’s numbers.  But, AI has just had two episodes, so right now the ratings have more to do with last year than what has happened this season.  Just to be clear the ratings are about last year, the X Factor being on Fox too, AI being more than 10 years old, and what some might perceive as a lack of diversity among the winners and the cast.

  • itsalleternal

    How do these ratings compare with the highest-rated shows from X Factor and The Voice, are they in the same ballpark now?

    I do think a major shakeup is in store. There is not enough room for 3 such shows. Question is who wins and who loses.

    What are the younger viewers (i.e. 12 to 34) preferring these days, what shows?

  • http://twitter.com/tinawinabina Tinawina

    I’m going to agree with you Hazhel. Last season drew a lot of viewers and kept them. The tour did very well. The winner sold buckets to the audience. There is nothing to suggest people didn’t like last season to the tune of a ~25% drop. I don’t think you can blame what’s happening now on anything that went on in Season 10.

    Idol has real competition from 2 other successful shows for the first time in its history. I bet some of the audience plans to watch The Voice so they didn’t tune in, and some are sticking with XFactor, all on top of the usual 10-15% audience erosion. These shows are huge time commitments and I can see how a significant amount of people are not going to commit to more than one.

    What they have to do now is hold on to the audience that is still willing to consider putting time into AI, and we will see how they fare on that shortly.

  • Anonymous

    Their dynamic together was completely different on X-Factor. That was majorly disappointing to me as a watcher of that show. 

  • Anonymous

    As the season went on Xfactor became less about Simon/Paula but became Simon/LA.  Paula became insignificant once her acts were gone.  Paula got totally upstaged by LA Reid.

  • iani

    “This too – the obvious Scotty victory made the finale very anti-climactic”.

    But he has sold a lot, that’s good for the show’s franchise, let’s see how the 5 million$ Simon’s proud amount will help Melanie to sell like Scotty.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_S3ZGXZCUE2YYOS7QV6QSTKM4SA buffynut2001

    No way, is Idol going off the air when it is still pulling in around 20 million viewers! Even 15 million would be better than 99% of the shows on TV!

  • Anonymous

    May 25th, 2011:

    “…last night marked the lowest rating ever for a performance finale of American Idol. Last year had a 6.7 demo rating, 2009 an 8.6 and 2008 was at 10.1.”

  • Kylee

    I doubt the ratings have anything to do with last season-most loved last year. The tour did well, the ratings were up, and we had a popular winner. It has more to do with the over saturation of singing shows and the fact that the show is aging.

  • Anonymous

    I wouldn’t blame any of this on Scotty! He’s been a pretty successful winner especially compared to the winners of S8 and S9. Three shows that are similiar plus AGT et al is just too much of the same thing. And the “nice” judges are bores.

  • Anonymous

    Last year final featuring two teenage country singers was lacking diversity, and the ratings for this particilar episode were low. But I don’t believe that the impact of one episode on the new season ratings would be huge.

    I agree that the most important reason for the drop must be the other shows.  They are fresh and new, and may make Idol seem like same old same old to those who like them.

  • Anonymous

    And I imagine a very happy Simon, rubbing his hands while reading those ratings, hoping in 2-3 years AI is gone and it lives more room for The Voice Factor. More attitudes in studying for next few years, which angles are best-looking for judges and more…It’s time for American Idol to go, hope doesn’t go to 13th one, lol, under or over…  

    I think that AI’s numbers should worry Simon, since a lot of people just see the X Factor as the fall version of AI.  The X Factor’s ratings didn’t build throughout the first season, so it’s hard to believe that at the start of the next season the ratings won’t be lower than the 3.5-3.7 that the show was getting at the end of the season.  Just like the XF may be hurting AI, if this season of American Idol isn’t exciting, and if the main topic is about falling ratings, that could negatively impact the X Factor.  Why would people just want to watch a carbon copy of a show that they will think is from the same people who are responsible for American Idol.

  • Anonymous

    I agree that if people believed that anyone has a chance to win it would reach more of an audience. However, I don’t think many people think anyone actually has a chance to win. I think people realize that a guy will win & that’s the problem even if the girl is better.

    I agree, and that’s a problem.  I’ve always said that everyone who has won deserved to win, but if people think that the winner is obvious from the first show, or that the show is biased towards people because of their race, genre, or sex then that’s a problem.  I’ve always believed that the two of the most important things that made AI a ratings giant is Fantasia and Ruben winning so early in the show’s run.  Those two wins made AI more than just another reality show.

  • Hazehel

     But, AI has just had two episodes, so right now the ratings have more to do with last year than what has happened this season. 

    I never argued that the ratings now is what happened this season.  It’s what happened before the season started, i.e.  X-Factor.
     

    MisterMiguel -  ”…last night marked the lowest rating ever for a performance finale of American Idol. Last year had a 6.7 demo rating, 2009 an 8.6 and 2008 was at 10.1.”

    As if it needs pointing out that it’s because they shift the time to a Tuesday.  In any case the total viewership was lower for Season 9, while for the finale the 18/49 demo for Season 9 was  8.2 vs 9.2 for Season 10.  When you take into account that that demo had consistently declined since Season 5, then you can see what kind of achievement that was.

  • iani

    I think that AI’s numbers should worry Simon, since a lot of people just see the X Factor as the fall version of AI.

    But he dreams big, he wants the spring-spot too, and maybe Randy also, lol. Seriously now, I don’t know when he has a final set of this show, all the time something “new” happens with/in it.

  • Kylee

    Last year’s NFC championships were 55 million, so this could potentially be great news for idol on Sunday. I heard just last week for football, the Simpsons ratings increased by 236%(!).

    On a different note, I can see idol going on as long as The Simpsons has.

  • Anonymous

    That deserves an asterisk beside it, since the final performance episode was on a Tuesday, a fact that was poorly publicized, even during the previous week’s show.  

    I don’t think that anyone is blaming the ratings on Scotty, doing so wouldn’t make any sense.  Nor am I saying that last year wasn’t a success, since it was.  But, the way that the judges judged, and the tone of this season so far, would probably turn off a lot of longtime viewers.  There’s a happy middle between the nastiness of season 9 and the judges telling everyone that they are fantastic.

  • http://twitter.com/hokiefam claudia powell

    I don’t care how much they try, all the shows are basically the same.  I tried watching a bit both nights but I didn’t see anyone who deserved the praise they got.  Maybe I’m jaded and bored.  I turned the channel both nights.  I’ll probably tune in again once they get to the top 12 or so.  Perhaps others will too.

    But, it still has a great following and I imagine it will stay on a long time.  If you are talking top 40 pop acts, well those people haven’t been watching in masses for awhile.  I think a lot of younger people like the many young drama shows on.  Even though Simon tried, you aren’t going to get the pop flash, edge, or look that is current.  I hated the competition with the judges on xfactor.  I wish they’d let whole bands come out there and sing whatever they want including original songs. But, there are a lot of people out there who appreciate and enjoy real singers so there is still a market for the show.  The ratings are shocking to me, but are still huge.

  • Hazehel

    But he dreams big, he wants the spring-spot too, and maybe Randy also, lol. 

    Seriously, if X-Factor gets the same kind of drop as Idol in Season 2, I see it getting the chop instead of Idol.  Idol has proven itself in the US, X-Factor hasn’t,  I think Fox would prefer a revamped Idol than X-Factor if both shows suffered bad drop in ratings.

  • http://twitter.com/svmreiter Susan Reiter

    While I see how Scotty selling well is better for the franchise than Lee NOT selling well, I am not sure successful Idols translate into more viewers, sadly.  A majority of the people watching are just interested in seeing who wins and not really interested in the careers of those winners. It’s like the apprentice or the biggest loser or whatever.  People only watch to see who ‘wins’.

  • Jewlmc

    Oh geez. Not what they want, but not the end of the world either.

  • http://twitter.com/MissGolightly22 No Thanks

    Well, IMO, when it gets to Top 12 and it starts looking like the SAME type of contestant is going to win for the FIFTH year in a row, those ratings are gonna drop even further.  Why stick around to watch a foregone conclusion? I’d rather watch MODERN FAMILY and BIG BANG THEORY if that’s the case.

    I’d like to see a REAL race where there are at least 4 or 5 contestants that are SERIOUS contenders (and hopefully running the gamut of race, sex and genre).  There hasn’t been a nail-biting finale in a while.

  • Kylee

    it starts looking like the SAME type of contestant is going to win for the FIFTH year in a row

    Well thank god Scotty is nothing like Lee style/genre wise, right?

  • iani

    Oh, No Thanks “I’d like to see a REAL race where there are at least 4 or 5 contestants
    that are SERIOUS contenders (and hopefully running the gamut of race,
    sex and genre).  There hasn’t been a nail-biting finale in a while.”

    I’m so there with you!!

  • Taro

    I’m not at all surprised by the ratings decline. Idol has become quite stale and boring. And frankly quite irrelevant compared to the other new shows. Though XF has room for MUCH improvement, there was some entertainment drama (IMO). The Voice also shows great potential. So I agree that this affected Idol. Idol’s last season buzz was due mainly to the new judges.

    I don’t think that the strong sales of the past season winner will help Idol. Sometimes we forget that Idol is first and foremost a reality TV show. Most viewers watch to be entertained. What does it matter if the previous winner is a platinum selling artist if it wasn’t their favorite. In fact if the previous season winner was their fav, then what’s the point in watching??

    Also, who wants to keep supporting a show where only the most popular (versus arguably the more talented) win. It becomes predictable, viewers get disenchanted and more will become casual viewers only…

    Sorry Idol, think you need to totally re-invent yourself or lose more viewers.

  • Kylee

    See, I don’t get how idol is stale and boring when The X-Factor took two long term idol judges who basically picked up where they left off.

  • musicality

    Idol is starting to sink because the novelty of the new judges is over and people realize that they totally suck as judges. That what’s the point of voting when another WGWG will win. I got through all of 5 minutes and heard Jlo’s annoying voice and switched the channel.

  • Kylee

    Well, first of all, I doubt the casual audience sees Scotty as another David Cook or Lee Dewyze LOL. And most of the casual audience loved the judges. People are just tired of singing competitions. I think The Voice and X Factor will sink even more this year. Idol is still a very highly rated and popular show, despite the decline.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_SYFK77IYLRQIVATQ2MJKSW2J7Y Pam

    I wouldn’t blame any of this on Scotty! He’s been a pretty successful
    winner especially compared to the winners of S8 and S9. Three shows that
    are similiar plus AGT et al is just too much of the same thing. And the
    “nice” judges are bores.

    Exactly.  I think Scotty’s win was a very good thing for the franchise when you consider the lackluster sales of those two previous seasons.  Yep, I think we can say that X Factor along with the other performance shows like this one has just created a lot of fatigue among the viewing public. 

    Yes, too much niceness with the judges is a complete bore in my book.  If there was any problem with season 10, it was that and that alone.  The viewers want to see the judges take their jobs seriously by doing their jobs. 

  • Jes Merrill

    If Simon and Paula were still there, it would have dropped even more!

  • iani

    “While I see how Scotty selling well is better for the franchise than Lee NOT selling well, I am not sure successful Idols translate into more viewers, sadly. A majority of the people watching are just interested in seeing who wins and not really interested in the careers of those winners. It’s like the apprentice or the biggest loser or whatever. People only watch to see who ‘wins’.”

    You’re absolutely right, I’ve mentioned Scotty with the flow of the conversation of “Scotty victory made the finale very anti-climatic” as the reason why AI has low ratings this year, the rating are bad because of so many factors, not because he won last year. He is successful and it’s not bad for/in the “name” of the show, he’s caring his AI winner tag everywhere in the media, good publicity for AI. If Melanie will be successful too, it’s a good thing for the show itself to say everywhere in interviews, news how successful their winner or other finalists are, not necessarily this translates for next year big ratings for X Factor..

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think fox is that worried about XF. Yes it attracted 10M instead of the 20 Simon wanted, but they moved the show around so much and it still attracted that 10M all season long. That’s a good sign not a bad one.

    For the people watching it wasn’t the trainwreck idol bloggers made it out to be. 

    Let’s see idols capability holding on to its viewers throughout the season. I’m excited to see it.

    I’m personally skipping the auditions this year. For me the live audience on XF gives it a better edge and The Voice auditions are great imo, so i don’t feel like watching idol auditions anymore. It’s too boring. I’m excited for Hollywood week and forward though (except the green mile, that’s awfully boring too).

  • Anonymous

    It fell well below the ratings that Simon boasted it would get (and Fox was probably hoping for better ratings)

  • Jes Merrill

    People are probably just bored of the auditions. Hopefully it picks up from having a great cast. The X factor auditions were the worst part of the show, so people are probably tired of them.

  • Anonymous

    Maybe, but I wouldn’t count on it. Ratings were below what they promised advertisers, leading to Fox having to do some “make goods”. And there is pretty much zero buzz about any of the contestants coming off the finale. 

  • Anonymous

    lol XFactor might not make it past a 2nd season. Simon needs to worry about fixing that show…not about what Idol is or isn’t doing

  • itsalleternal

    What were the ratings for the highest-rated episodes of X Factor and The Voice? Could they actually SURPASS Idol in 2012?

  • http://twitter.com/KariannHart Kariann Hart

    Does anyone count the dvr and vcr recordings when figuring ratings?  I love this show and believe Idol has started off to a good beginnings.  It’s biggest flaw is the method of voting.  Otherwise, the judges seem better.  As others feel, the best judges are on “The Sing-Off.”  I hope this isn’t the last season.

    I don’t miss Simon Cowell at all. 

  • Anonymous

    I feel that the job of the judges is to give good critiques based on their music expertise to help tthe public make an informed choice.  We got next to none of this from this current bunch.  When this happens, it degrades the show turning into just a bit of pop culture fluff.  I think this really hurt the show.  I know it made me watch it much less than I did before.  Perhaps they are short on music expertise.

  • cokezero

    I didn’t even know the season had started until I started seeing reports on the ratings drop, lol. And compared to most people my age, I’d say I’m a relatively devoted follower of the show, even if now it’s just to mock it.

    What was that song that fat dude who won had? “Sweet Schadenfreude”?

  • Anonymous

    How do these ratings compare with the highest-rated shows from X Factor and The Voice, are they in the same ballpark now?

    No.  The Wednesday episode was pretty much double the ratings of what the X Factor and Voice usually get, and Thursday was around five to six million viewers more than those shows, if not more.

     Kylee said:  See, I don’t get how idol is stale and boring when The X-Factor took two long term idol judges who basically picked up where they left off.

    Not only that, but if The X Factor and Voice are so much better than AI, why did the ratings for those shows fall as their seasons progressed, and not increase, like American Idol’s did during its first season.  

  • larc

    It’s hard to know what’s really causing this.  One reason for the decrease from Wed night could be the shortage of joke auditions.  I’m aware some people watch Idol audition shows just for those and stop watching once auditions are over.  Maybe they were disappointed and didn’t come back last night.  Others don’t tend to watch the audition shows because of the usual time-wasting silliness, but tune in when the serious competition starts.  Maybe numbers will come up once semifinalists and then finalists are announced.  I’m waiting to see what happens then before I start getting too concerned.

  • Anonymous

    I really think once Idol is past the initial auditions and onto the Hollywood week, viewership will pick up IF there is a variety of interesting talented people to root for.  For much of last season, and for the entire tour, that’s what there was. Sure the top two were country, but there were two jazzy singers, 2 or 3 pop singers, a gospelly singer, a rock singer, and a couple of quirky singers. All of the top 11 had unique personalities and styles that connected with the audience.  As far as the winner being a forgone conclusion, I don’t think the Scotty supporters felt that way; they wouldn’t have spent two or more hours every week voting if they thought he had it in the bag.  I just think we need to relax, see how the season plays out before declaring American Idol dead on arrival.

  • flakky

    I had to switch the channel both nights because it just lacked any form of excitement. Same format over 10years can get boring. And the other two shows are not helping matters because they are relatively new and are not yet jaded

  • Jes Merrill

    The Voice-14.41 million but that was only once.

    The X Factor-12.59 million for the finale. Idol is still on top.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    “There’s a happy middle between the nastiness of season 9 and the judges telling everyone that they are fantastic.”

    I agree.  I wasn’t in favor of Simon’s nasty way of criticizing the delusional/misguided contestants, but he was right to try to make them realize that they should pursue another path than singing.  Lying to these people by implying that they should continue to pursue their “dream” or they just need to practice more is much worse and more unkind than trying to give them a much needed reality check.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    Philip Phillips already looks like a major frontrunner.  His audition video has over 267,000 views.  He’s so different from the kind of contestant who has gone far in the past few years!  lol

  • Jes Merrill
  • Hazehel

    One reason for the decrease from Wed night could be the shortage of joke auditions.

    It could be that, although the drop happened too early for that to be a big factor.  I personally have always argued against the idea that Idol should stop showing those bad singers, because many people watch the show precisely for that reason.

    It used to be that the bad auditions are so bad that that are funny, problem is that I haven’t seen these hilariously bad singers for quite a while now.  All the really funny ones I can remember are from the early seasons.  Now they are simply singers who aren’t good, but not truly terrible, and I find it offensive when Randy makes all those faces mocking these people.   Perhaps there just aren’t that many delusional people who would audition any more now because Idol has been around for so long that even the delusional ones are aware of what’s happening.  

    It doesn’t matter if they don’t show the bad singers, but they have to make a show that is entertaining lasting 1-2 hours.  It is extremely tiresome watching the endless parade of mostly OK-ish singers like we have last night.  I thought they got it right with the first auditioner (the Korean guy)  because it was funny, but after that it got very boring.  If the rest of the audition episodes continue like that the show could be in big trouble.

  • iani

    “I feel that the job of the judges is to give good critiques based on
    their music expertise to help the public make an informed choice.  We
    got next to none of this from this current bunch.”

    And we got more confused contenders with their staged words/language(from judges) during live-competition. Steve now only “beautiful” knows to say, put him use words from the audition-rounds, at least half of “beautiful”s-gone. Man, it’s so frustrating for me, that the bad voting system and the damn incident with confused-Paula while judging Jason Castro top 5(S7), have changed the course of the show to be taken as a better competition (JMO).  Then they brought Kara with her wooden-language, Ellen came and the show  started to be taken less as a serious one, a “nail-biting” competition, only watching her trying to give some “constructive” critiques/ideas, meh …

  • http://twitter.com/LindaChen168 tennislover

    I can’t agree with you more. I met someone who voted for Scotty last season. She watched all the seasons but never voted for anyone except Scotty. But still she didn’t buy his album or follow him once the season was over.

  • http://twitter.com/LindaChen168 tennislover

    I don’t watch Idol until it gets to Top 24. Every year.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think the ratings drop is very surprising. Last year people were tuning in to see what Steven Tyler and JLo were like the first day.   Maybe the real test will come a few more episodes in.

  • itsalleternal

    If that is the case, it is clear one demographic – a demographic that loves WGWGs – owns the show. He is the greatest gift – to X Factor and The Voice.

  • Anonymous

    I’ve noticed over the years, that Idol fans my age (early 20s) just watch the show through a pirated stream or catch clips of the show online afterward.  Maybe increased online viewing has caused some of the decline in numbers.

    Purely anecdotal evidence, of course.

  • Anonymous

    Maybe people are waiting for the real competition to start and skipping the bad auditions and other fodder.  The show is ten years old.  Ratings drop for every show over time. I think Fox will be concerned if the show falls out of the top 20 shows because then advertising rates will go down and the bottom line profit margin will change.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_AGWO435FL6UN2ICRVTFLWRJZSA Lexie

    Tell her to buy his album;)  She’ll love it…

    All I can say is that I hope Idol keeps going.  I just got into it last year (because of Scotty)…he’s certainly doing his part tweeting about watching the show.  My thought is wait–we don’t have enough data points yet.  Hopefully, Sunday will be better…

  • Anonymous

    I think Philip already has this in the bag just like Scotty did last year.  It’s too predictable and that’s why people laugh at the show and quite watching.  Let the conservatives have it and I’ll crack up when Philip becomes the next wgwg in plaid.

  • Miss Chaos

    Idol gave me my most favorite person ever, I will watch the show till I die, or it dies, which ever comes first.  I think so far there were a lot of good contestants, and we havent even see half of them. IDK that much about The Voice, but will watch it, and X Factor sucked, but I watched it anyways. Stuff always happens on the show, and unless I really dont have a life, I look forward to it,!!!!!!!!!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_UITYTUSGL7IK7WLFFDXXRYP7GA Falfor

    I think it should be noted here that there is probably a 50/50 split on who likes the auditions and who does not. The actual show has not started yet. There are people who like to watch the early auditions and some that do not. So a drop in the numbers, does not bother me in the slightest, because the competition has not yet begin.

  • Tony

    Idol may finally slowly be dying. Although dying is pretty strong since it’s still No. 1 in the ratings. I’m not buying the “people are going to wait until the REAL show starts” excuse because that NEVER happens. The highest rated episodes of all of the reality competition shows (including Idol) are the premieres and the finales.

    Unless season 11 quickly becomes another season 5  is universally thought to be as one of the best seasons ever, I don’t see Idol climbing out of this hole. Granted, if this season is amazing, it can always rebound next year and open with even bigger ratings. But I’d day that this season will stabilize around 14 or 15 million viewers total unless something drastic happens.

    I don’t think X-Factor “stole” viewers, exactly; I just think a lot of people may be a little burned out….two back-to-back singing competitions on the same network may be a little much for some people.

  • Susan

    Well, I personally didn’t watch last night’s show because I go to my friend’s house on Thursday to watch Vampire Diaries with her and her teenagers. ;)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ashetalia-Staatz/100001792695528 Ashetalia Staatz

    This made me look at the winners of idol. Of the ten, nine are from
    “red” states, with six from the Confederacy. Six are male. Eight are
    evangelical Christians. Two are country, two are r&b, one blues,
    three “soft rock,” and two pop.

    That is an odd mix. The evangelical, conservative influence is outstanding. The lack of pop is surprising, as pop is the genre most likely to create an “American Idol,” yet only two idols–Clarkson and Jordin–are pop.

    Idol began in 2002, in the midst of 9/11 patriotic fervor. Times are changing; politics are changing. The demographics for the show and the winners themselves might no longer fit what represents the country. I wonder if that has anything to do with the decline of the show, along with the fact that the show is, after all, ancient at this point.

  • Anonymous

    It was adjusted up to 18.2 million viewers, for some reason that makes me feel a little better lol.

  • Anonymous

    Scotty and Phillip are nothing alike except for the fact that they wear plaid. Their genres, ages, and styles are completely different. I don’t get it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ashetalia-Staatz/100001792695528 Ashetalia Staatz

    tbh, I’m not watching the show. Where is Phillip from? Does he seem sexual? Does he seem religious? If he seems risky, if he seems sexual, if he seems secular, then he would be quite different from Scotty.

    Look, Scotty and Kris have nothing in common in terms of genre, but in terms of accent, wholesomeness, religiosity, they have a lot in common. idol is not simply a musical contest.

  • musicality

    They are both southern white boys. They are WGWG’s. Doesn’t matter if one strums his guitar while twanging out a country song and another whatever you call that genre of Phillip. They are the same type. Now if he wears a cross or mentions the church he’ll have it in the bag. They are all alike. That’s what’s boring. You can predict it. S10 was so utterly boring because it was so obvious Scotty was going to win and Scotty himself was boring. X-Factor toward the end you knew Melanie was going to win but only toward the end and she is no WGWG.

  • Anonymous

    I think that they made a huge mistake keeping the same judging panel. They are all nice but noone has anything to say of substance. The producers may have thought that Idol did well because of them last year, but I think that it did well despite them. 

  • Anonymous

    That is an odd mix. The evangelical, conservative influence is outstanding. The lack of pop is surprising, as pop is the genre most likely to create an “American Idol.” Only two idols–Clarkson and Jordin–are pop.

    Pop really isn’t a defined genre, it’s whatever is popular at the moment, but if you are talking about the current popular music style, it’s really not surprising that many of the idol alums wouldn’t fit alongside people like Katy Perry.  Current popular music is about the production, and not the vocals or the lyrics, and we saw how well that worked during last year’s semi final round, when a contestant tried to sing Usher’s OMG.  That song pretty much doesn’t have any lyrics, it’s all about the beat and Usher dancing.  But, on idol, the songs that work best are the ones that showcase someone’s vocals.  On this format the songs that are just about the production will smoother the contestants vocals, and make it seem like they aren’t singing at all.  We saw that when Jordin came back to perform “I Am Woman”.  A lot of people questioned whether or not she was lip syncing.  

  • shell29

    X Factor was not a flop.  It didn’t meet the lofty ratings expectations of Simon Cowell but it was still a hit for FOX in the fall.  The network doesn’t care if it beats Idol’s ratings, they just want a hit.  I don’t think X Factor or Idol is in any danger of cancellation any time soon.

    Even with the decline in ratings, Idol is still at or near the top of the heap.  I think the decline has less to do with X Factor, The Voice or WGWGs and more to do with the fact that it’s in it’s ELEVENTH season!  After ten seasons of basically the same formula/routine with the audition episodes, it can get stale for some people.  The novelty of the new judges has worn off.  Maybe people are waiting until the competition starts to tune in.  We’ll see what happens over the course of the season.  If they continue to decline then there might be cause for alarm, but I would think the network to expect declines just due to the age of the show.

  • Anonymous

    Eight are evangelical Christians

    Just out of curiosity (not to push back on your argument or anything), how did you come up with that number?  I think Taylor, David, and Lee would not identify themselves as “evangelical.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ashetalia-Staatz/100001792695528 Ashetalia Staatz

    You’re right that pop is a mixture of genres and changes over time. I was thinking of the “signals” performers give during idol as to where their musical interests are, and what they do after they leave the show. Of the ten idols, only Kelly and Jordin have ended up top 40, as opposed to hac, r&b, or country. That could, of course, be a response to the demographics of the show’s audience. That itself is a problem in that the musical choices of the show’s voting audience are not representative of what Americans are actually buying, which is, mostly, pop.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ashetalia-Staatz/100001792695528 Ashetalia Staatz

    I included Taylor, but not David or Lee.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t ever remember hearing Taylor identify himself as an ‘evangelical’ christian.

  • Anonymous

    Reminder:

    Please keep the comments in this post on topic. We’re discussing RATINGS here.

  • Reflections On Life

    Audition fatigue.

    Auditions means you sit through soooo many hopefuls, plus all the joke/bad contestants. Now multiply that by 3 (for XFUS and VoiceUS), and that’s just way too many singers to be interested in listening to. Plus, The Voice really nailed the audition portion – swiveling chairs aside, the judges were lively, the singers were either interesting or good, and there weren’t too many auditioners shown.

    I’m guessing viewing numbers will be more in the expected range once the live shows start.

  • http://twitter.com/KariannHart Kariann Hart

    I think there will be a change in who actually gets into the TOP 3.  Personally, Season 10 was the most boring Final Two competitors.  One Country singer?  Fine.  Two did little to excite many people.  Maybe if it was Haley instead of Lauren…

    I think Jimmy Iovine will have some effect on the ratings.  Something different needs to be done.  Of course, this is my reaction.  Others may think differently.

  • Anonymous

    My main problem with this show is that this is a competition and the winner should have a grand prize that is worthy. I used to love to root for a fav to win so that they may get the grand prize. Yes, my fav may not be the winner but at least you know that the grand prize is waiting for the winner at the end. And to reach that grand prize, as a viewer, you have journeyed with them though the tears and sweat and excitement when they succeed/fail to stay alive to reach the ultimate prize. 

    Now, I don’t see a grand prize. I see lots of prizes and they all look the same. Everybody has a recording contract. Only difference is whether its a major label or minor label and being on a major label as we all know is no guarantee of success. Time and trend has changed, as it is well known here being a winner doesn’t mean that you sell boat loads of records. So, now, I’m rooting for a winner who will get a recording contract (which all the other non-winners will also get), promo (which if they are lucky non-winners will also get), sales that may or may not come and after one album, if the sales doesn’t come, will get kicked out into the streets again if he is not lucky. 

    Tell me why am I going to watch this show and waste my time rooting for a contestant when what I feel like telling them is that don’t work so hard. Just get 5 minutes of fame and if you’re lucky, you will make even more money than the winner. At least with X-Factor, its RM5million. (Or so I’m told). At least I know there is a reason for the contestants to cry when they leave the stage. 

    Last year, all the contestants were talented but I never saw one that went out of their way, dig deep into their talent and came out with best of themselves to beat the others. (Or at least when they did I already stopped watching the show mid season). During early of the season, I posted that Scotty will sing country every week and win. Surprise, surprise. Then there were cheerleading judges. Hello, this is a competition not a school play and the finale was the last straw. Modern Family is so much more interesting and at least it makes me laugh.

  • Anonymous

    I think you kind of nailed it. Again, that’s not the only reason but I do feel that once the make the Top 10 the compeition will be over. Anyone with any potential will be signed and then we’ll see the faces in the credits for S12. ;)

    I can see from the spoilers that the cast will be similiar to S10 – very attractive, pleasant, nice.  That just doesn’t make interesting TV (to me) when you add the uncritical judges. I think they need to cast a couple of villains or something. ;/

  • Anonymous

    O hi, I didn’t see your reply. I’ve deleted my rambling. So sorry. 

  • electric_dog

    I don’t think there is any point in a competition where everybody gets a prize.

    What is the point to vote for your favorite if losers are treated the same way as the winners.

    Bye-bye Idol!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_SYFK77IYLRQIVATQ2MJKSW2J7Y Pam

    I see someone brought up the ratings adjustment.  Here it is:

    In what feels like the Bush/Gore Florida election of TV ratings days, American Idol and The Big Bang Theory were each adjusted up a tenth of an adults 18-49 ratings point versus Thursday’s preliminary ratings. And we know that the American Idol 8pm half hour rating was a 5.2 (the second half hour was a 6.3), and so unless there are some hanging chads out there, The Big Bang Theory topped the 18-49 ratings in the 8pm half hour. Whew.

    In other adjustments,  The Office, The Mentalist and Grey’s Anatomy were each adjusted up a tenth. and Person Of Interest, Rob and Parks & Recreation were each adjusted down a tenth.

    LINK

  • Karen C

    The ratings may be lower because with all the new singing shows, the novelty of Idol has worn off.   People used to have to wait until there was a show of this type, but now there are 4, so the excitement of it being the first week of Idol has worn off.

    I think, though, that if there are some contestants that are well liked, that will help the ratings.  I do think Idol is more depended on people liking the contestants.

  • Anonymous

    If it took ten seasons for the novelty to wear off, that’s a pretty good run.  Usually, novelty wears off faster than that.  

    Actually, The Voice, X Factor, and Sing Off, which gets awful ratings, are not the first shows to challenge AI.  The Voice and XF are the first ones to do well, but pretty much every single network has tried to air an American Idol ripoff, and they have all failed.  Because of that, I think that AI has been more than a novelty show for people.  They’ve done something right in order to be the number one show for all of these years.  Even the producers were predicting that the show would slip off of its top spot four or five years ago.  None of them expected the show to last this long.

  • Anonymous

    Bye-bye Idol!

    Wednesday’s show will still be the number one show for the week, excluding football.  Thursday’s show looks like it will be either  2, or at the least in the top 5.  So, AI isn’t going anywhere.

    I don’t think there is any point in a competition where everybody gets a prize.

    Did you think that the losers were going to quit the industry if they didn’t win?  Since they are all talented, it makes sense that someone would try to sign them.  It’s been the same throughout idols run.  Sony always signed the top two people.  The finale is usually the highest rated show of the season, even though everyone knows that the top two will get contracts.  Just more evidence to show that the attachment that most people have to the show doesn’t extend beyond the finale.  People still care about who wins.  Even people who don’t watch the entire season.