Ratings: Winter Olympics Open to 19.6 Million, Reign Holds Steady, Fallon Hits All-Time High

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InquisitionFor those wondering why NBC started its Winter Olympics coverage a night early, there are almost 20 million reasons.

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Coverage of the Winter Olympics in Sochi on Thursday night netted the Peacock 19.6 million total viewers and a 5.8 demo rating — compared to the 3 million and 1.0 that the network’s usual Thursday line-up most recently averaged.

That said, that total audience is down from both the 2010 Winter Olympics’ proper Opening Ceremony (32.6 mil) and the first night of competition (26.2 mil).

RELATED | What to Watch Friday: Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony, Fallon’s Last Late Night

Still, 19.6 mil/5.8 > 3 mil/1.0. And that played some role in Jay Leno’s Tonight Show send-off scoring its best metered-market household rating in almost five years and Jimmy Fallon’s Late Night in turn hitting an all-time high.

RELATED | Jay Leno’s Final Tonight Show Recap: The 5 Most Memorable Moments

Going up against the Games, CBS’ The Big Bang Theory (17.2 mil/5.0), The Crazy Ones (7.6 mil/1.7) and Two and a Half Men (8.1 mil/1.8) each slipped two tenths in the demo, Elementary (9.3 mil/1.8) dipped one tenth and The Millers (11 mil/2.7) somehow rose a tenth.

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Over on Fox, American Idol (11 mil/3.0) and Rake (4.3 mil/1.1) each were down two tenths.

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The CW’s Vampire Diaries (2.13 mil/0.9) slipped two tenths to tie its series low, while Reign held rock steady at 1.66 mil/0.6.

RELATED | Vampire Diaries Recap: The Darkness Returns

Want scoop on any of the above shows? Email insideline@tvline.com and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line.

Comments (20)

  • Such a shame for Reign hoped it would rose, last night episode was tremendous. Kudos to Megan Follows.

    Comment by spindae2 – February 7, 2014 08:58 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • “Steady” opposite the Olympics is a rise. Seven of the eight other shows went down.

      Comment by Matt Webb Mitovich – February 7, 2014 09:37 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • U’re probably right! But I hoped for the show to rise last night was the best Reign episod to date. :))

        Comment by spindae2 – February 7, 2014 09:40 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • Reign was amazing last night! I love that show!

          Comment by Ava – February 7, 2014 09:47 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I miss Francis :(

      Comment by Elyse – February 7, 2014 11:39 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • u see him on the next ep….and I loved reign last ep was really interesting I want another season…

        Comment by hoda (@ehfo0) – February 7, 2014 02:12 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • How do Americans deal with their Olympics coverage?

    Comment by xav – February 7, 2014 08:58 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • What do you mean how do we deal with it? Last night I dealt with it by not watching it ;)

      Comment by d4h8a15r16m23a42 – February 7, 2014 09:05 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • These days they show a lot of the events live on cable or streaming Online. Then they have a daily round up of what happened during prime time usually focusing on the popular events.

      Comment by Becky – February 7, 2014 09:09 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • NBC Olympics aside, CBS was the big winner with most of their shows only slipping a little (and the Millers actually gained!?!) Out of all of them though I would say that Reign was actually the most impressive. No, the rating isn’t that great but it was rock solid against the Olympics and maintained it’s ratings even when it’s lead-in dropped.

    Comment by Dav – February 7, 2014 09:13 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • No wonder that the Vampire Diaries goes down. This season had been really bad, and after the break is even worst. They should write a final season or do a proper job an found a new story, since right now they recycling old stories from past seasons.

    Comment by Alrisha – February 7, 2014 09:24 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I’m so tired of the Stefan/Elena/Damon love triangle. Can we just stop? I don’t even care who she ends up with.

      Comment by Elyse – February 7, 2014 11:41 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I agree this season has no structure..it’s all over the place. And yessss who cares who she ends up with? They are ruining Stefan and Damon because they are ALWAYS pissy and complaining that they don’t have the girl!

      Comment by Jenny – February 7, 2014 12:23 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • How great was Reign last night? The story has been consistently good and although I started off wanting Francis and Mary together, Bash and his gorgeous eyes are winning me over. I can’t get enough of Bash and Mary’s chemistry.

    Comment by Sara – February 7, 2014 09:32 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • What were Kimmel’s ratings? I didn’t watch Leno’s farewell because the Momument Men and Damon were on Kimmel. Curious how that played out.
    Vampire Diaries was awesome. They keep adding new elements and layers to the show and the characters.
    Shamy’s Valentines had a great pay off. So good.

    Comment by Gerald – February 7, 2014 10:00 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Really hope they throw the history book out entirely on Reign, rather than try to throw it only halfway out. I think it would be so much better for the show if they were free to do whatever they wanted rather than try to shoehorn in what actually happened. But anyway, yeah, the show has gotten so much better since it went less “ooooh look at all the pretty dresses” and more “hey let’s all try to murder each other for the throne.” And the actress playing Catherine has certainly been killing it the last few weeks. Mary too, but I’ve thought she was a great lead actress since the first episode, so no surprise there.

    Comment by Cool. – February 7, 2014 10:02 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Congrats Reign keep holding strong, last night episode was the best so many twist and turns and secrets being expose. I do miss Francis tho, I love when both brothers are on the show.

    Comment by Fernando – February 7, 2014 10:22 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • The Big Bang Theory is killing it with the ratings. Hopefully with those ratings Reign will get another season.

    Comment by tp – February 7, 2014 12:37 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • What I see for the next 2 weeks is ABC, CBS, FOX and CW providing reruns and fillers opposite The Olympics on NBC. I’m waiting to see how that 19 million holds up against Hollywood Week on American Idol.

    Glad that I have something to fall back on with previously recorded shows to catch up on, ‘cuz the pickings are pretty slim for the next 2 weeks.

    Comment by Ginger Snap – February 7, 2014 02:17 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Really happy that Reign held steady vs. the Olympics. That’s impressive. It better get picked up for a second season. It’s by far my favorite show on tv right now.

    Comment by ninergrl6 – February 7, 2014 03:23 PM PDT  Reply To This Post

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