AMERICA'S GOT TALENT (NBC)
Scheduling history: America's Got Talent has been scheduled on multiple nights in each season since the first, and those nights have almost always been Tuesday and Wednesday. The early part of summer 2012 was a rare exception as the network put Talent on Monday/Tuesday, but even that eventually reverted to the Tuesday/Wednesday setup.
See (who saw) how it all began: Like So You Think You Can Dance, the other summer staple covered so far this summer, America's Got Talent got a big initial sampling. It premiered to 12.4 million viewers and a 4.6/14 adults 18-49 rating on 6/21/06. Week two dropped 17% to a 3.8 demo, then week three rebounded to a 4.1, but from there the show would mostly dip into the low 3's for the rest of the first season.
The best of times: Also like So You Think You Can Dance, the strongest season of Got Talent's run to date was the second one. It was also the only season the show was regularly scheduled on just one night. It only had one airing outside of Wednesday, a season-low 2.6 demo on 7/11/07. Season six was also a standout, up a couple ticks from the previous three seasons. Its 4.6 demo on 7/5/11 was the only time the show's ever matched its series premiere demo on 6/21/06. However, the show has become much stronger on a historical-adjusted basis in the last couple seasons. The summer 2015 season eked out a new series high in Plus (at least for the main night), and the addition of Simon Cowell in 2016 thrusted the show to another level entirely.
The worst of times: Remarkably, season seven with its introduction of Howard Stern really marked the first significant downturn ever for this series, as it was down over 15% on both nights. The last two results airings (on a special Thursday night) were particularly ugly, starting with a series-low 1.9 demo on 9/6/12 and culminating with just a 2.4 for the 9/13/12 finale that was down a third from the 2011 finale. It had a nice rebound on the main night in 2015, but dropped to new series lows for the Wednesday results edition: a 1.6 on 8/12/15, 8/19/15 and 8/26/15.
Then vs. now: Every once in awhile you'll hear someone say that NBC should do a regular season edition of America's Got Talent, wondering how this show could linger in the summer with numbers that would be more than acceptable at any time of year. In its early years, this was all about NBC's incredible weakness during the regular season; if it didn't happen during the 2007-08 writers' strike, it seemed like it would never happen. But now, Talent is blowing away its previous career highs in A18-49+. However, NBC is also much more buttoned up in the regular season nowadays. If the NBC regular season staples (especially The Voice) start to crumble, this might become a real discussion again. For now, Talent is having a lot of fun utterly dominating the summer space.
Adults 18-49 info by season:
|1||Summer 2006||Wednesday 8:00||3.46||2.9||4.6||detail|
|1||Summer 2006||Thu 9:30, Thu 9:00||2.65||2.1||3.5||detail|
|2||Summer 2007||Tuesday 8:00||3.65||+5%||2.6||4.4||detail|
|3||Summer 2008||Tuesday 9:00||3.20||-12%||2.6||3.7||detail|
|3||Summer 2008||Th 9:30, We 8:00, Th 8:00||2.66||2.3||2.9||detail|
|4||Summer 2009||Tuesday 9:00||3.30||+3%||2.9||3.7||detail|
|4||Summer 2009||Wednesday 9:00||2.92||+10%||2.1||3.5||detail|
|5||Summer 2010||Tuesday 9:00||3.15||-4%||2.6||3.9||detail|
|5||Summer 2010||Wednesday 9:00||3.04||+4%||2.5||3.9||detail|
|6||Summer 2011||Tue 8:00, Tue 9:00||3.48||+10%||2.8||4.6||detail||A-|
|6||Summer 2011||Wednesday 9:00||3.17||+4%||2.5||4.1||detail||A-|
|7||Summer 2012||Mon 8:00, Tue 8:00||2.85||-18%||2.4||3.7||detail||C-|
|7||Summer 2012||Wednesday 9:00||2.66||-16%||1.9||3.7||detail||C-|
|8||Summer 2013||Tuesday 9:00||2.55||-11%||2.2||3.1||detail||B|
|8||Summer 2013||Wednesday 9:00||2.41||-9%||2.1||2.9||detail||B|
|9||Summer 2014||Tue 8:00, Tue 9:00||2.33||-9%||1.8||3.0||detail||B|
|9||Summer 2014||Wednesday 9:00||2.11||-12%||1.8||2.4||detail||B|
|10||Summer 2015||Tuesday 8:00||2.34||+0%||2.1||2.6||detail||A-|
|10||Summer 2015||Wed 8:00, Wed 9:00||1.79||-15%||1.6||2.1||detail||A-|
|11||Summer 2016||Tuesday 8:00||2.48||+6%||2.3||2.8||detail||A|
|11||Summer 2016||Wednesday 8:00||2.25||+26%||1.8||2.8||detail||A|
Historical-adjusted ratings by season:
|4||Summer 2009||110||big hit(sum)||1.60||+14%||96||123||106||110|
|5||Summer 2010||112||big hit(sum)||1.63||+2%||92||139||128||139|
|5||Summer 2010||108||big hit(sum)||1.58||+11%||89||139||103||139|
|6||Summer 2011||137||big hit(sum)||1.99||+22%||110||181||169||149|
|6||Summer 2011||125||big hit(sum)||1.82||+15%||98||161||146||142|
|7||Summer 2012||121||big hit(sum)||1.76||-12%||102||157||157||123|
|7||Summer 2012||113||big hit(sum)||1.64||-10%||80||157||144||102|
|8||Summer 2013||121||big hit(sum)||1.77||+0%||104||147||147||114|
|8||Summer 2013||114||big hit(sum)||1.67||+2%||100||138||133||119|
|9||Summer 2014||124||big hit(sum)||1.80||+2%||96||159||159||133|
|9||Summer 2014||112||big hit(sum)||1.63||-2%||96||127||127||127|
|10||Summer 2015||139||big hit(sum)||2.03||+12%||125||155||155||143|
|10||Summer 2015||106||big hit(sum)||1.55||-5%||95||125||95||125|
The War of 18-49 chronicles the ratings history of veteran primetime series. For more, see the Index.